Bickerdike Wins National Award for Zapata Apartments After 8-Year Logan Square Affordable Housing Campaign
The National Development Council (NDC) has announced that Bickerdike Redevelopment Corporation’s Zapata Apartments is the 2015 winner of the Award for Excellence in Community Impacts. The Award, recognizing the top community development project in the nation, was presented at the NDC Academy Conference in Washington, DC on May 14th.
“The competition for this award was fierce, with nearly 100 great applicants from around the nation in the running,” said Joy Aruguete, Bickerdike’s Chief Executive Officer. “We are honored that Zapata Apartments is being recognized as a national model for maintaining community diversity in the face of gentrification.”
“Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood has experienced a significant amount of transition in recent years, “ said Saundra Hudson, National Development Council’s Chairperson, “The Zapata Apartments provides direly needed affordable rental housing, preserving a space for low-income, working families in Logan Square, while in turn stabilizing area school populations.”
Threatened by skyrocketing housing costs, the Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA) launched a communitywide campaign in 2005 to allow low-income families to stay in a neighborhood they had long called home. Due to soaring rents and housing prices, Logan Square lost more than 16,000 Latinos from 2000 to 2010, a 30 % decline.
LSNA chose Bickerdike Redevelopment Corp. to be the developer of Zapata Apartments and in 2013, the community celebrated the culmination of the hard-fought, 8-year struggle with the construction completion and occupancy of the project.
Zapata Apartments consists of 61 new, affordable rental units in 4 buildings built on long-vacant land. The project has allowed low- and moderate- income families to stay in their community. The average annual household income at Zapata is $24,300. Most units consist of 2- and 3-bedrooms to meet the high demand for affordable, family housing. Seventy-seven children call Zapata Apartments home.
The project has many environmentally sustainable, green amenities, including: solar domestic hot water, superior insulation, high efficiency HVAC, Energy Star appliances, bamboo flooring, bike parking, permeable paver parking lots, native landscaping, and a smoke-free building. All residents receive a Green Manual describing the project’s green systems and tips for sustainable living.
The NDC Academy is a biennial conference focused on providing community development professionals from around the nation with the latest on policy changes and best practices affecting federal, state and local development finance tools that are critical to the achievement of urban and rural job creation, affordable housing and community development goals. Learn more about Bickerdike’s Zapata Apartments and other award semi-finalists at: http://ndcacademy.org/2015-awards/.
The Logan Square Neighborhood Association is a nonprofit, multi-issue, grassroots community organization serving the diverse communities of Logan Square since 1962. Collectively, LSNA represents thousands of residents and dozens of member institutions that include churches, schools, block clubs, multi-unit buildings, and social service agencies.
Bickerdike Redevelopment Corporation has created and preserved 1,256 units of affordable housing. Bickerdike’s work includes affordable housing development, preservation, and property management, providing training and access to living wage jobs, and organizing and developing local community leaders.
For more information, please contact Bickerdike’s Communication Manager at 773.278.5669 or email@example.com.
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