New senior apartments transform vacant factory

Photo courtesy MVAH Partners
A grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Vine Street Lofts will take place at 2 p.m. on Thursday.


JASPER — Jasper’s newest affordable housing facility is open and ready for new tenants.

A grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Vine Street Lofts will take place at 2 p.m. on Thursday.

The 62-apartment housing structure is located inside the old Jasper Wood Products’ original headquarters building at 1316 Vine St. The income-restricted apartments can be rented by residents who are at least 55 years old.

Cheri Steele, regional developer at MVAH Partners LLC, estimated that work began on the then-vacant Vine Street Lofts building in November 2017. More than 20 different apartment floor plans are available, and Steele said the first resident moved in last week.

The private development was roughly $12 million and Mayor Terry Seitz said it falls in line with the county’s 2014 housing study.

“Ultimately, we could have ended up with two vacant factory buildings in various states of disrepair,” Seitz said, referencing the Jasper Wood Products building and the former JofCo headquarters, which now houses the Jasper Lofts. “Right now, we have investment in two apartment complexes that are slightly below market rate that make the opportunity for those of affordable housing to be able to look at that and say, ‘Here’s some alternatives without market rate cost,’ and just give that opportunity that Jasper’s never had before.”

Steele said the rooms in the Vine Street Lofts are big, spacious and have great windows. She is excited to see people move in.

“I would let my own mother live there,” she said. “It’s beautiful, and it came out really, really, really well.”

According to the MVAH website, each of the one- and two-bedroom apartments feature fully-equipped gourmet kitchens with energy-efficient appliances, exceptional closet space, central air conditioning and a laundry room that includes a full-size washer and dryer. The building’s common space includes a fitness center, media room, business center with computer workstations and a community room.

Those interested in the Vine Street Lofts are encouraged to visit the website or call 556-0361.

Jasper Lofts stands just down the road from the Vine Street Lofts. MVAH employees also worked on that building as part of the Cincinnati-based Miller-Valentine Group, but MVAH has since split off from Miller-Valentine and now handles both affordable housing operations.

According to Herald archives, both developments received incentive packages from the City of Jasper, and Jasper Lofts was awarded $1,199,705 in state tax credits through the Internal Revenue Service’s Rental Housing Tax Credit Program, which the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority administers.

Jasper Lofts houses 67 one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom workforce housing apartments. The development opened in the spring of 2017, and families began moving in in August 2017.

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