EL PASO, Texas, Aug. 18, 2022 – Hunt Capital Partners (HCP) announced the closing of $14.9 million in federal low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) equity financing for the rehabilitation of Cielo Tower in El Paso, Texas. Situated on 1.36 acres in El Paso’s east-central Buena Vista neighborhood, Cielo Tower is a former 123-unit public housing development, originally constructed in 1975 to provide affordable housing for individuals over the age of 62. Following renovation, this seven-story building will offer four studio units, 118 one-bedroom units and one two-bedroom unit to senior households with incomes at or below 50% and 60% of the area median income (AMI). The development sits alongside the city’s public transportation route and will also include 40 off-street parking spaces, including 32 standard spaces, six accessible spaces, and two accessible van spaces. A project-based Section 8 Housing Assistance Payments contract will be in place for 79 of the units, and the remaining 44 public-housing units will receive rental assistance through a Mixed-Finance Amendment to the Consolidated Annual Contributions Contract (ACC) signed by the housing authority.
Notably, Cielo Tower will be HCP’s 12th project with the Housing Authority of the City of El Paso (HOME, formerly known as HACEP). Prior to Cielo Tower, HCP provided the equity investment for HOME to build and/or preserve 2,893 units of affordable housing across El Paso. With the additional 123 units at Cielo Tower, HCP and HOME will have partnered to provide more than 3,000 affordable homes to El Paso residents.
“We are very pleased to continue our longstanding partnership with Housing Opportunity Management Enterprises,” said HCP Executive Managing Director Dana Mayo. “As housing costs continue to rise across the state, the need for affordable housing will only continue to grow. This project addresses that need and sends immediate aid to one of Texas’ most vulnerable communities.”
The scope of renovation at Cielo Tower includes repaving parking lots; rehabilitating outdoor common spaces; replacing windows, flooring, doors, appliances and hardware; and repairing electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems. Amenities for all units will include heating and air conditioning, kitchen appliances and several modern amenities. Other common amenities and services made available for residents of Cielo Tower include a community center, a business center, elevator access, and a central laundry facility. Security features, such as fencing and gating, controlled access and video surveillance, will be made available. At no cost to the resident, HOME will also provide supportive services that are designed to improve a tenant’s social and educational opportunities while simultaneously moving their way to an enhanced quality of life.
Paisano Housing Redevelopment Corporation (PHRC), a wholly owned subsidiary of HOME, is the developer for Cielo Towers; Affordable Housing Enterprises is the general contractor, with Pavilion Construction acting as prime subcontractor; 1919 Architects is the architect; and EP Housing Operations and Management Enterprises, a wholly owned subsidiary of HOME, is the management agent. Construction is expected to be completed by April 2024.
The total development cost for Cielo Towers is $37.4 million. Hunt Capital Partners anticipates syndicating the federal tax credits through its proprietary fund with JPMorgan Chase, Hunt Capital Partners Tax Credit Fund 40. Citi Community Capital provided $15 million in tax-exempt construction bond financing and $4 million in tax-exempt permanent bond financing. HOME provided a $3.6 million soft seller loan. PHRC provided a $6.1 million Operating Fund Financing Program loan, as well as an $8.1 million gap loan.
Environmental Social and Corporate Governance (“ESG”) Investing
Hunt Capital Partners recognizes that its institutional investors are seeking to increase the social value of their investments to help further their ESG initiatives. Investment in affordable housing not only improves the living conditions of its residents, but it also helps to remove obstacles that stand in the way of creating a healthy, safe and stable home environment for low-income families and seniors. When families spend less on housing related expenses, they have more resources available for other essentials such as food and clothing, or even extracurricular activities and educational programs. One of the most significant benefits to providing quality affordable housing is an increase in an individual’s physical and mental health. Hunt Capital Partners’ affordable housing investments create a lasting effect on the people and communities they serve for generations to come.
About Hunt Capital Partners
Hunt Capital Partners (HCP) is the tax credit syndication division of Hunt Companies, Inc. (Hunt). HCP specializes in the sponsorship of Federal and State Low-Income Housing, Historic, and Solar Tax Credit Investments funds. Since its inception in 2010, HCP has raised over $2.8 billion in tax credit equity in over 48 proprietary and multi-investor funds. HCP manages almost 760 project partnerships representing over 75,000 homes in 51 states and territories. Founded in 1947, Hunt is a privately held company that invests in businesses focused in the real estate and infrastructure markets. The activities of Hunt’s affiliates and investors include investment management, asset management, property management, development, construction, consulting and advisory. For more information on HCP, please visit www.huntcapitalpartners.com, or for Hunt, please visit www.huntcompanies.com.