Deborah McColloch, Director: 1234 Market St., 17th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107
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Affordable Housing
OHCD assists in the production of:

  • housing that is affordable for moderate- and middle-income people (80% and 120% of AMI)
  • housing that is affordable for low-income people and special-needs populations (up to 50% of AMI)

For income guidelines click here.


1. Neighborhood-Based Homeownership Housing:
The City develops affordable housing through neighborhood-based community development corporations (CDCs) and developers who have formed partnerships with neighborhood organizations.

2. New Construction:
The construction of new affordable housing for sale to homebuyers is increasingly important in rebuilding neighborhoods in the most blighted areas of Philadelphia. As part of the Neighborhood Transformation Initiative, vacant lots are acquired and assembled into buildable sites for new construction housing. In addition to providing affordable housing, new housing construction at scale can rebuild housing markets and increase value in communities affected by disinvestment and abandonment. New construction can also provide residents with modern amenities including off-street parking and larger lots at lower density.

Rental Housing
1. Neighborhood-Based Rental Production:
In its role as the City of Philadelphia’s housing finance agency and real estate acquisition/disposition agency, RDA has developed a reliable process for delivering CDBG funds for rental housing production by private, non-profit and CDC developers through a competitive RFP approach.

The RDA has particular expertise in combining CDBG development subsidy funding awarded through the local RFP process with Low-Income Housing Tax Credits financing. RDA underwriting staff has developed a close working relationship with counterparts at the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA), the state agency that administers tax-credit financing allocated to Pennsylvania.

RDA and PHFA staff coordinate their respective reviews of development financing proposals for Philadelphia ventures to ensure that CDBG subsidy funding is used to make Philadelphia proposals as competitive as possible for tax-credit financing. Because of this close working relationship and the capability of many developers of Philadelphia affordable-housing ventures, the City has succeeded in receiving substantial awards of tax-credit financing in every funding cycle since 1993.

Financing for the rehabilitation and new construction of rental projects is provided using CDBG and HOME funds in accordance with the Rental Project Selection Criteria. Project financing for rental ventures is usually made available in the form of a long-term, low- or no-interest loan. Financing administered by OHCD through RDA usually leverages PHFA PennHOMES funds and low-income housing tax credits, and in some cases, foundation funding.

In order to promote transitional and permanent housing for special-needs populations, projects recommended to receive financing must allocate 20 percent of the developed units for special-needs housing. Also, in order to ensure the most efficient use of funds, OHCD requires any project which does not achieve settlement within six months to undergo a RDA staff review. Following RDA review, OHCD may decide to withdraw project funding, extend its commitment or have a different development entity undertake the construction to ensure project completion.

2. Public Housing Production:
The City’s housing agencies support the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA) in its development efforts in a variety of ways, including the acquisition of property through Act 94 and Urban Renewal condemnation by the RDA and participation in planning efforts for PHA development priorities by OHCD.

3. Development Financing/Homeless & Special-Needs Housing:
OHCD maintains its commitment for the development of permanent housing for the following Philadelphia residents: the homeless; persons with substance abuse; mentally ill and mentally disabled persons; persons with AIDS and disabled persons.

OHCD provides development financing to projects selected through a competitive process. An RFP was issued by RDA in January 2004 to provide development financing for projects serving special-needs populations. Sponsors and/or developers were required to demonstrate development capacity and capability to leverage city funds with state and/or federal special-purpose funds and private funds. Priority was given to those projects which in addition to leveraging other funding, can provide needed supportive service resources, require additional OHCD financing to address gaps which cannot be eliminated by other sources, support other City revitalization efforts and/or are a continuation of a multiphased project.

Click here for more details

4. Development Financing/AIDS-Related Housing:
The RDA’s special-needs housing development request for proposals issued in January 2004 included HIV/AIDS housing development. Up to $800,000 in HOPWA funding will be available.

5. Housing Development Assistance:
OHCD supports rental developments which receive other federal funding through the Housing Development Assistance budget. In general, the program provides funding for site improvements and related construction activities. For rental development with commitments of HUD 202 (elderly) or HUD 811 (disabled) financing, the OHCD subsidy is capped at $15,000 per unit, based upon a dollar-for-dollar match of other funds, provided funds are available.

Lawrence Court - under construction in the St. Hugh neighborhood.

Jefferson Square new homeownership construction

PHDC house in West Philadelphia

Ludlow Village homeownership

Lillia Crippen Townhouses - rental housing

Serenity Court, Calcutta House - AIDS housing

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