$31M Westside housing project receives additional funding

Earlier this fall, the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority (MFA) approved funding for a new senior housing community on Albuquerque’s Westside.

On Sept. 20, the MFA board of directors approved $3.3 million for the construction of La Serena Apartments, located at 457 Coors Blvd. NW

The funds are a combination of loans from the New Mexico Housing Trust Fund ($1 million), the National Housing Trust Fund ($1.5 million) and the HOME Investment Partnerships Program ($800,000), which is a federal block grant designed to create affordable housing for low-income households.

In addition, MFA will allocate nearly $14.9 million in low-income housing tax credits, split over a 10-year period, to help support the project.

In total, the mortgage lender will contribute 53% of the overall financing for the development, MFA Director of Housing Development George Maestas said.  

“The more equity that goes into a project to pay for its total development cost, the less debt that’s required,” Maestas said. “In other words, if there’s a smaller loan amount required, then the project can afford to reduce its rents and thereby make their rents affordable.”

La Serena will measure in at 86,800 square feet and cost $31 million to develop. HB Construction will begin construction in early December, Maestas said. 

The facility plans to have 100 units with rents based on 30% to 60% of area median income. The units are one- and two-bedrooms, ranging from 601 to 926 square feet, respectively.

Maestas said the community is scheduled to open by December 2025 and is targeted toward residents aged 55 and older.

Amenities include a fitness room, business center, a dog park, community gardens, patios and outdoor locking storage.

“Housing options for seniors is particularly vital, as New Mexico has a higher percentage (34%) of senior households than the country overall and just over 30% in Bernalillo County alone,” Laura Chavez, CEO of Supportive Housing Coalition of New Mexico, said in a news release.

“One of the things that we require our developers to bring to us when they’re applying for funding is a market study that’s provided by a third-party provider,” Maestas said. “In fact, the original application in 2021 was stalled due to construction cost volatility and the developers reapplied this year for funding and updated their market study, which shows a need for this type of housing in this area.”

In addition to La Serena, MFA has 52 projects across New Mexico under construction or in the permitting process. Earlier this year, the mortgage lender announced plans to construct the Three Sisters Apartments, a 70-unit affordable housing complex located in Las Cruces at 130 N. Walnut St.


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