On September 13th the CCLF office was at capacity with community stakeholders working to reduce crime and blight in Chicago – joining The City of Chicago and CCLF were Rush University Medical Center, MB Financial Bank, Cook County Land Bank, CARA, Safer Foundation, Community Investment Corporation, 20th Ward Alderman Willie Cochran, 27th Ward Alderman Walter Burnett, and many others. The first joint press conference between CCLF and the Mayor’s Office was on the topic of the new $6 million Chicago Neighborhood Rebuild Training Pilot Program (Rebuild Program).
The City’s $2 million investment will leverage an additional $4 million in private capital from Rush University Medical Center, MB Financial and others for the program. The City support is from funds originally designated for property tax rebates that went unused. This is Rush’s first investment in their new corporate strategy of social investment in Chicago’s West Side. CCLF’s President, Calvin L. Holmes, also celebrated MB Financial increasing its investment in CCLF tenfold- from $100,000 to $1 million to support the program.
The Rebuild Program is a joint venture between the City of Chicago, CCLF, Cook County Land Bank Authority (CCLBA), Community Investment Corporation (CIC), The Safer Foundation and CARA. The goal is to rehab 50 vacant homes in the 7th, 10th and 11th police districts and provide transitional jobs and training opportunities for 200 at-risk youth and ex-offenders over three years.
CCLF and City of Chicago Department of Planning and Development held a bidders conference September 18, 2017 seeking qualified developers for the Rebuild Program. Willie Edwards, Assistant Commissioner for Housing Preservation, identified a number of incentives for developers that included low cost acquisition of property which will be free of any liens; a ready list of potential home buyers and a pool of local workers. The City of Chicago has a number of delegate agencies providing homeownership training and helping families qualify for mortgages as part of its Micro Markets Recovery Program. Edwards stated these families wishing to be first time homeowners can feed
naturally into the Rebuild Program providing a pool of home buyers to developers. Edwards also emphasized this program was not contributing to neighborhood gentrification because it will be targeting local residents for homeownership and is part of the City’s larger plan to stabilize communities.
Lycrecia Parks, Vice President of Portfolio Management for CCLF, summarized the benefits to developers participating in the program. “While the program
does not guarantee the developer a huge profit, it is focused on stabilizing the housing stock and improving the neighborhood conditions in the 7th, 10th and 11th Police Districts. The Neighborhood Rebuild program will assist developers stabilizing communities and participate in workforce development by allowing trainees on site. Also, through this program and its partners, developers
should receive lower financing and acquisition costs. This will then garner a profit upon the sale of the home. Finally, participating in the program will help developers build relationships with the City of Chicago and could potentially lead to additional partnerships/opportunities with the City in the future.”
Developer Request for Qualifications are due October 9, 2017 and can be accessed on CCLF’s website – Click Here