Henderson housing development offers affordable apartments to low-income seniors.


Like many apartment complexes, when the Smith Williams Senior Apartment Complex opens Thursday, it will have a lounge, an exercise room and a computer area.

The 80-unit, three-story building has rooms with high ceilings, vibrant colors and appliances such as microwave and a washer and dryer when residents move in.

On the outside, the architect chose earth tones to go with a more modern design.

Even though it may look similar to complexes seen in Henderson, the Smith Williams Senior Apartment Complex, 575 E. Lake Mead Parkway, is unlike most because it was intentionally designed to provide affordable housing for low-income seniors.

"Just because you have affordable housing doesn't mean it has to look like affordable housing," said Winston Henderson, the complex's architect.

The Smith Williams Senior Apartment Complex is the Nevada Housing Division's first faith-based-sponsored housing project in Southern Nevada.

In order to rent, residents must be older than 55 and have a household income restricted to 60 percent of the area median income.

If qualified, people can rent a 872-square-foot, one-bedroom unit at $492 a month or a 1,072-square-foot, two-bedroom unit at $591 a month.

The project led by the Rev. Sam Roberson and his congregation at Community Baptist Henderson started when they decided to purchase land owned by the city of Henderson to expand the church.

Expansion wasn't just about growing the church. It also was about giving back to the community.

Roberson then teamed up with Frank Hawkins, executive director of the Community Development Programs Center of Nevada, to develop an affordable seniors apartment complex.

Because of the economy, the development had several hiccups trying to find investors for the $12 million project.

After struggling to find investors, the Smith Williams complex found reprieve through two investors: Royal Bank of Canada, which contributed $10.2 million, and Stearns Bank, which contributed $6.9 million.

Along with the investors, Henderson contributed about $1.2 million, Clark County added $950,000 and the Nevada Housing Division put in $350,000.

Mayor Andy Hafen, who toured the facility Sept. 27, was impressed by what the public and private collaborative effort has been able to accomplish.

"This is the perfect collaboration project," Hafen said. "This sets the standard."

Now that the complex is built, Roberson plans to build a new church facility on nearby land.

For more information about Community Baptist Church, visit community baptisthenderson.org.

To apply for the senior housing, call 382-3726.

Contact Henderson/Anthem View reporter Michael Lyle at mlyle@viewnews.com or 387-5201.

 

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