Former Columbus Early Learning Center Gets Set For New Use
Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) is breathing new life into Franklin County’s first early education center for African American children.
First known as the Ohio Avenue Day Nursery, the property that sits at 162 North Ohio Avenue on the Near East Side of Columbus was constructed in 1917. where it was a staple of the community. The Ohio Avenue Day Nursery, and later the Columbus Early Learning Centers (CELC), served African American children in the neighborhood until 2014 when CELC moved to its current location at the Champion Intergenerational Center, just a stone’s throw away.
CMHA purchased the property from the CELC in 2017, a century after it opened its doors to the children of the Near East Side. Shortly thereafter, CMHA began working on a plan to save the building and repurpose it as housing.
Upon completion, this property will feature ten market rate apartments. The design will mesh classic and contemporary styles; highlighting its storied past while providing high quality amenities for those who will call this historic site home. Units will showcase some of the original exposed brick along with wood finishes, Shaker cabinets, and sleek quartz countertops. There will also be a large, outdoor community area at the rear of the property.
CMHA and Construction crews from Elford Inc. began working late in 2018.
CMHA will unveil the new name for the property as we get closer to completing the rehab work this fall.
This historic property sits at the southwest corner of Legacy Pointe at Poindexter. CMHA and our partner McCormack Baron Salazar developed Legacy Pointe as part of our $30-million Choice Neighborhood Implementation (CNI) grant. The CNI grant, awarded by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), has been a catalyst for transforming the Near East Side community, having leveraged over $225 million in public and private funding. When completed, we will have built 450 new, mixed-income units of housing at the site of the former Poindexter Village public housing property.
View Annual PHA Plan Significant Amendment here.
CMHA to Begin Upgrades to Four Communities
This winter, CMHA will begin a large renovation project for over 250 affordable housing units in four of its communities: Eastmoor Square, Glenview Estates, Indian Meadows, and Ohio Townhouses.
These properties will see over $8 million in upgrades and other rehab work. This work will include interior upgrades such as new furnaces, hot water tanks, energy efficient appliances, plumbing, and new flooring. The exteriors will feature new siding, upgrades to parking lots and streets within the properties. CMHA will also be making Americans with Disabilities Act-related upgrades to several units.
CMHA is using HUD’s Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program to move these properties out of the Public Housing subsidy program and into the Section 8 program as Project based Vouchers (PBV). Because of the RAD program, CMHA is able to access Low-Income Housing Tax Credits and other soft debt to help finance the rehab work.
CMHA is using RAD to convert its entire portfolio of Public Housing properties to the Section 8 PBV platform. In the process, CMHA is spending over $35 million rehabbing and upgrading these properties.