LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - The City of La Crosse Community Development Committee approved a $15.8 million dollar development proposal. With a vote of five to two, the proposal submitted by Cinnaire Solutions Corporation was selected out of three proposal application packages.
According to Council Member for the 11th District, Jennifer Trost, the decision was tough to make as all three proposals complied with affordable housing criteria.
"We were really spoiled for choice to have three credible, qualified applications and they each had their own strengths," Trost said. "And in the end we really could not make a wrong decision."
Cinnaire's project plans for a four-story, 65-unit complex that will include 35 covered parking stalls.
La Crosse's newest affordable housing effort will be located on the block between Mississippi St and Jackson St on the east side of Fourth Street. The City already owns a row of several parcels on that block with the developer company planning to acquire several others. Once all properties are secured, final design plans will be made.
Mayor Mitch Reynolds explains that the project serves several housing demographics with multi-leveled rent targets.
"We're addressing the needs of those who are homeless or recently homeless, we're addressing the needs of those who are 50% of the area median income," Mayor Reynolds said. "We're addressing the needs of those who are at 80% of the area median income"
Council Member Trost added, "Some of the units will be market priced, some of them will be at different tiers of affordability." In all, 52 units will be earmarked for those in need, including 17 set aside for homeless and 35 set aside for lower middle incomes and the rest at market pricing. Which will be a good mix for this neighborhood development.
"We have other developments like this in the city." Mayor Reynolds said. "Garden Terrace is one of the best examples, and it's been really successful."
The approved project proposal now goes before the City's common council when it meets in August.
If it gets final approval there, then it's a green light for the developer to begin.
Although affordable housing is needed now, Cinnaire will take some time to work out the last details of design, planning and financing while gathering nearby resident input regarding how it should look so it blends in with the surrounding neighborhood.
The hope is that process will result in ground breaking early 2023 with Council Member Trost remarking, "The different proposals had occupancies scheduled for the Spring and Summer of 2024."
Once completed, the Mayor says the building residents will be able to take advantage of its location.
"It provides a tremendous level of access to the services that we provide not only in our downtown area of the City of La Crosse, but to our medical systems," Mayor Reynolds said. "And is serviced by the transit system that we already have, I mean it's definitely positive."