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10/4/2017 11:15:00 AM
Bloomington OKs plans for affordable, accessible housing

Kurt Christian, Herald-Times

Milestone Ventures and LifeDesigns’ latest low-income housing project proposal is also their largest.

The Bloomington Plan Commission has given early approval to a three-story, multifamily building and the reuse of a historic church at 1105 and 1107 W. Third St. to address a growing need for affordable and accessible housing. The 40-unit proposed project would be the largest in a line of partnerships between LifeDesigns, a Bloomington nonprofit serving people with disabilities, and Indianapolis contract developer Milestone Ventures.

“I’m probably (more) excited about this project than any one we’ve done,” said Susan Rinne, CEO of LifeDesigns.

“It’s very different, because of the integrated components. We’ve got a community space that we haven’t had as much of in prior projects.”

The project, to be called Kinser Flats, has been proposed for a 1.25-acre property on the southwestern corner of Third and Walker streets. All units would be reserved for residents making at or below 60 percent of the area median income. Within that restriction, eight units would be reserved for people with disabilities, and eight would be permanent housing for people experiencing homelessness.

Rinne said the project has been in the works for three years, even as LifeDesigns partnered with Milestone Ventures to build Crawford Homes I and II, permanent supportive housing projects aimed at people experiencing chronic homelessness. LifeDesigns conducted market research in 2016 as part of developing Crawford Homes II that demonstrated a need for 3,000 apartments for low-income people in the region.

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