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Detroit mayor pledges $50 million to keep affordable housing in city

Duggan, nonprofits, JPMorgan Chase announce $50 million pledge

DETROIT – As Detroit continues to come back, Mayor Mike Duggan wants to make sure the city is affordable for everyone.

On Tuesday, Duggan, along with nonprofit organizations and JPMorgan Chase, announced a $50 million pledge to keep affordable housing in the city.

The overall goal is to raise $75 million to develop housing, such as the Saint Rita building.

Affordable housing can quickly evaporate when new jobs and businesses move into the city. But over the last few years, Duggan said of 4,000 affordable housing units that have expired, all have been renewed. He said 1,000 more have been built.

“We’re nearly halfway to our goal," Duggan said.

The Saint Rita building on the north end was gutted by fire in 2005. It’s one example of a building that has been redeveloped and reopened for people with low incomes, including homeless veterans.

Duggan said it’s not a cheap project.

“If you want to hold rent low enough that people of low income can afford it, but your housing costs to build are the same as every place else, you lose money,” Duggan said. “Nobody is going to build apartment units where the cost of building is more than they get back.”

City officials announced the Detroit Housing For the Future Fund, to which JPMorgan Chase has pledged $15 million and $10 million from the Kresge Foundation.

The fund will finance housing for people whose income is about $33,000, or $47,000 for a family.

The priority, though, will be for people who have the lowest income.


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