On the coldest day of the year-to-date, the groundbreaking ceremony for Edison Avenue Lofts took place. The day may have been bitterly cold but the mood of the event was very warm. Several people in attendance shared fond memories of the former Tri-County YMCA in Granite City. The building was erected in 1924-26 for the Granite City branch of the YMCA, which was founded in 1916. It was named to the National Register of Historic Places in September 2017.

The Event-

Over 100 people attended the event, which took place in the rotunda of City Hall, located directly across the street from the YMCA. Speakers and dignitaries included:

Ed Hagnauer  (Emcee)
Mayor of Granite City

Conrad “Babe” Champion
Granite City High School coach, former professional baseball scout, and namesake of Babe Champion Field in Granite City

The Honorable Rachelle Aud Crowe
Illinois State Senator

Trudy Bodenbach
Administrator, Madison County Community Development

Alan Quick
Director of Strategic Planning and Research, Illinois Housing Development Authority

Mark Zavaglia
President, FCB Banks

Charles A. Cafazza
Market Manager and Director of Investment, Associated Bank

Stephen Acree
President—Rise Community Development

The Stats-

Total Development Cost: $10,721,329

  1. $5,991,028 Federal LIHTC Equity
  2. $1,553,509 Federal HTC Equity
  3. $4,513,941 Construction Period Loan (FCB Banks)
  4. $2,019,298 IHDA HOME Loan
  5. $600,000 Madison County Community Development HOME Loan
  6. $112,000 Illinois Affordable Housing Tax Credit (IAHTC) Donation-Sourced Loan
  7. $280,000 Seller Financing
  8. $100 GP Equity
  9. $165,394 Deferred Developer Fee

The apartments will range in size from 500 to 991 square feet and rents will range from $525 to $750 per month. The Madison County Housing Authority has committed Project-Based Housing Choice Vouchers for 10 apartments, two of which will be reserved for veterans and six for individuals utilizing the Statewide Referral Network. Justine Petersen and Artists First have signed memoranda of understanding to provide a range of tailored services to the residents of the Edison Avenue Lofts, including financial literacy, employment assistance, and art therapy.

Development Team:

  • Architect: Rosemann & Associates
  • General Contractor: Altman-Charter
  • Legal Counsel: Applegate & Thorne-Thomsen
  • Project Accountant: RubinBrown
  • Management: McCormack Baron Salazar
  • Environmental Professional: Maurice-Benjamin
  • Sustainability Consultant: ASERusa
  • Historic Consultant: Karen Bode Baxter
  • Construction/Perm Lender: FCB Banks
  • Equity Investor: Boston Capital

The development will exceed all minority and women-owned business participation goals in both hard and soft costs.

Project Amenities:

  • Energy Star / Sustainable Design
  • High Efficiency Furnaces and Appliances
  • Off Street Parking
  • Dedicated bike racks
  • Universal Design & ADA Units
  • Community Laundry Facility
  • Galleries, Art Studio & Performing Arts Space
  • WiFi
  • Fitness Room

The Timeline-

Closing and construction start, December 2019/January 2020

Construction completion, December 2020

100 percent units leased, March 2021

Stabilization, December June 2021

Permanent loan conversion, June 2021

Closing and construction start, December 2019/January 2020

Construction completion, December 2020

100 percent units leased, March 2021

Stabilization, December June 2021

Permanent loan conversion, June 2021

Granite City Mayor Ed Hagnauer emcees the groundbreaking ceremony for Edison Avenue Lofts

“It seems like everybody in Granite City has lasting memories of the ‘Old YMCA Building’—from learning to swim as a child, to lifting weights in the basement as a teen, while watching the night life Downtown out of those ground-level windows peering onto the streets.  Our people have a love affair with the place, and it was very important to us to see the building not only saved, but used well.

Rise has a been a terrific partner all the way through this process, so far.  I’ve seen other groups come, promise much, and then disappear or change their story.  I’ve become pretty skeptical.  But you guys are actually getting it done, and holding to your word.

We are for this project, and thankful for your persistent partnership in it.  Thank you.” – Mayor Ed Hagnauer

The Purpose-

The historic building will be converted into 37 affordable 1- and 2-bedroom apartments, with 5,658 square feet of commercial space and 6,290 square feet of common area and amenities for use by residents. The development is focused on serving artists and veterans who live in the Granite City area and are interested in living downtown, where proximity to amenities such as City Hall, restaurants and coffee shops, movie theater, and parks are within walking distance. Vacant for over 14 years, the former YMCA Building is the last major vacant building in the downtown Granite City area.

The board of directors and staff at Rise would like to send out a warm thanks to everyone involved with this important project and to everyone who celebrated the groundbreaking with us!