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River Stroll’s Granada Houses senior housing is getting a $63 million rehabilitation

Share this…FacebookPinterestTwitterLinkedin A stately constructing alongside the River Stroll in downtown San Antonio will stay reasonably priced housing for low-income…

By Staff , in Senior Living , at October 5, 2021



A stately constructing alongside the River Stroll in downtown San Antonio will stay reasonably priced housing for low-income seniors and bear a much-needed $63 million renovation.

The San Antonio Constructing Trades Council is working with native developer Pat Biernacki and his enterprise companion Victor Atkins to rehabilitate Granada Houses at St. Mary’s and Villita streets.

The upgrades embrace changing air-con, mechanical techniques and elevators; rising the whole variety of flats to 265 from 249; outfitting flats with new home equipment, flooring, window remedies and kitchen and toilet fixtures; including facilities together with a fitness center, chapel, library and humanities and crafts room; and restoring widespread areas to mirror what the constructing initially appeared like when it opened within the late Twenties.

Biernacki praised the Constructing Trades Council for retaining and bettering the constructing, which is owned by a partnership that features him and the union.


“Granada might simply be a boutique resort. It might simply be very high-end flats,” he stated. “They made the choice to double down on it being senior reasonably priced housing.”

Biernacki pointed to what he known as a “big hole” in provide of reasonably priced housing for seniors.

“Granada has lengthy been a part of filling that hole and we’re not going to cease doing it,” he stated. “We’re going to repair this increase and we’re going to make it a good higher place to stay and we’re going to maintain doing it for a very very long time.”

The renovations shall be financed utilizing state and federal historic tax credit and low-income housing tax credit. The San Antonio Housing Authority was initially a companion on the challenge however its involvement now’s restricted to issuing as much as $30 million in tax-exempt bonds.

About 90 p.c of present residents earn lower than 30 p.c of the realm median earnings and the remaining earn lower than 60 p.c, in accordance with info a SAHA spokesperson stated the company had not too long ago acquired.

Half of the flats can be capped at rental to residents incomes 50 p.c of the realm median earnings and the opposite half to residents at 60 p.c of that degree, in accordance with the knowledge supplied to SAHA. Biernacki didn’t reply to an inquiry searching for to substantiate the figures.

The council, which is a neighborhood affiliate of the Texas State Constructing and Building Trades Council, has acquired a number of presents to purchase Granada Houses, stated Thomas Kennedy, govt director and secretary-treasurer of the statewide group.

“They determined the necessity for reasonably priced housing for seniors outweighs the advantages of a straight-out sale,” he stated in a press release. “Granada Houses is likely one of the few union-owned housing complexes within the U.S. That permits the homeowners to carry out this renovation with union labor, offering development jobs with good pay and powerful advantages that keep locally.”

Biernacki renovated Wedgwood Senior Residences, a fancy for seniors at 6701 Blanco Street the place a lethal fireplace occurred in 2014. He used historic tax credit for that challenge, which is now often called Ensemble Residences.

At Granada Houses, the scope of the upgrades, senior inhabitants and use of tax credit are just like the Wedgewood work, he stated.

“It was constructed to be a resort, so you have got great quantities of amenity area that had been previous ballrooms or industrial kitchens or libraries and eating rooms, and so we’ll have the ability to make the most of loads of that area in changing to a number of the facilities that residents have been fairly vocal in pondering can be of excellent worth,” Biernacki stated.

The Granada constructing will stay occupied throughout renovations and tenants will transfer right into a refurbished unit as work is completed, in accordance with Cadence McShane Building Co. The challenge, which has begun, is predicted to conclude in late 2022.

The 12-story constructing was constructed within the late Twenties because the Plaza Resort.

It was constructed on the previous Bowen’s Island, a slice of land surrounded by the river, and touted because the “best resort within the South and the final phrase in ‘Service of Good Dwelling’ for San Antonio’s guests and downtown dwellers,” in accordance with a column by Paula Allen.

Smith Bros. Properties developed the resort and the Tower Life Constructing throughout the road, and the 2 had been related by an underground passageway that clients and staff might use to travel.

The Plaza modified arms a number of occasions within the Nineteen Fifties and Sixties. The trades council bought it in 1966 amid push-back from the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, which was frightened about resort rooms for HemisFair ‘68 attendees, and transformed it to flats for seniors.

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