Paterson, NJ (October 11, 2023) – WinnCompanies executives and developers Owen Tonkins and Daryll Tyson today joined with Paterson Mayor André Sayegh and state and local leaders to celebrate the completion of a $26 million building effort that featured new construction and historic adaptive reuse techniques centered around the 19th century Argus Mill in Paterson’s Great Falls Historic District.
Known as Mill Street Square, the development transformed a vacant, four-story, 7,700-square-foot historic brick mill into six loft-style, two-bedroom apartments, with programming space for the non-profit Grandparents Relatives Care Resource Center (GRCRC); built a new four-story apartment building for 68 low- to moderate-income households; built a new parking garage for the Paterson Parking Authority; and restored the historic Thompson and Ryle Houses as the offices of the nonprofit Paterson Music Project.
All 74 apartments are Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) units, with 52 units targeted to multi-generational households with grandparents raising their grandchildren and earning less than 50% of the Area Median Income (AMI). Families meeting the grand-family definition will be eligible for project-based rental assistance from the Paterson Housing Authority. The remaining 22 units are for families earning below 80% of AMI, also under the LIHTC program. Fifty-four (54) of the new apartments are two-bedroom and three-bedroom units, creating much-needed space and flexibility for larger families in Paterson.
“Mill Street Square showcases how strong public-private partnerships can come together to meet Paterson’s pressing need for affordable housing,” said WinnCompanies President Gilbert Winn. “We’re excited to begin leasing a development that has been a priority for the city for many years. Our local partners at ART-JIUS Enterprises, backed by catalytic financing from state and private sources, were critical to making this unique project a reality.”
"We are proud to celebrate the completion of Mill Street Square, a $26 million construction effort that exemplifies the power of collaboration between public and private sectors,” said Mayor Sayegh. “This development addresses Paterson's urgent need for affordable housing and provides a haven for grandparents raising their grandchildren. It's a testament to our commitment to our community's well-being and inclusivity."
Funds for Mill Street Square came from construction and permanent financing provided by Bank of America and Citi Community Capital (Citi); tax-exempt bonds and 4% LIHTCs issued by the New Jersey Housing & Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA); LIHTC and Federal Historic Tax Credit equity from Bank of America; an Economic Redevelopment and Growth (ERG) state tax credit award from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA); an ERG bridge loan from New Jersey Community Capital and BlueHub Capital; ERG credit equity syndicated by Fallbrook Financial Services Company; U.S. Housing & Urban Development Project Based Vouchers administered by the Paterson Housing Authority; and HOME and local funding from the City of Paterson.
"Multi-generational households are an often overlooked and underserved family type. Mill Street Square not only addresses our state's critical affordable housing needs but does so for grandparents who are the primary caretakers of children,” said NJHMFA Executive Director Melanie R. Walter. “We are proud to have contributed $37.9 million in financing for this project, which is a testament to how innovative public-private partnerships can make a lasting impact on Paterson families."
“The redevelopment of the Argus Mill has returned it to its former status as an economic asset to the Great Falls community. Mill Street Square meets a longstanding need for attractive affordable housing options while offering specialized resources for grandparents caring for their grandchildren," said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan. “This kind of public-private investment. in communities where it’s needed most aligns with Governor Phil Murphy’s vision for a stronger, fairer New Jersey economy, by prioritizing the well-being of multigenerational Paterson families.”
“Argus Mill is terrific example of the important impact that affordable and middle-income housing can have on the families and neighborhoods in Paterson,” said Mary Thompson, senior vice president of Community Development Banking at Bank of America. “WinnDevelopment and partner ART-JIUS had the vision to create a unique housing experience that prioritizes grandparents’ role in raising grandchildren while contributing to a growing, vibrant community.”
Local Impact Includes New Non-Profit Spaces and Construction Jobs
WinnDevelopment Senior Vice President David Ginsberg and Senior Project Directors Laura Manville and Lindsay Finkenstaedt led the partnership with Tonkins and Tyson, the principals of ART-JIUS Enterprises, who were both born and raised in Paterson and who have also led successful development efforts in Maryland and Georgia.
The project created state-of-the-art program and office space for the GRCRC, a long-time Paterson nonprofit that assists thousands of Paterson grandparents and kinship caregivers with services, meals, clothing, furniture and referrals to local service providers. In addition, an existing space was renovated to better serve the Paterson Music Project (PMP), a Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts program that empowers children to achieve their full potential through the pursuit of musical excellence.
Construction activity generated more than 100 permanent and temporary jobs, bringing millions of dollars to Paterson and the Great Falls Historic District, with general contractor O.A. Peterson, based in Montclair, NJ, paying all subcontractors the New Jersey prevailing wage rates for construction workers.
More than $5 million in contracts were awarded to Section 3 and M/WBE businesses, exceeding project goals by more than 35 percent. Nine MWBE businesses were hired during construction and 20 percent of all construction spending went to MWBE businesses. Working with its partner, Renaissance Groups, WinnDevelopment also helped four existing local businesses become certified and registered as MWBEs in New Jersey, expanding their access to public sector business opportunities. Thirty-one Paterson residents were hired during construction under contracts totaling $3.2 million.
“What warms my heart is to see local Paterson folks working on the site. Being in a position to help local Paterson contractors get certified is a blessing,” said ART-JIUS Enterprises President Daryll Tyson “Today, we celebrate not only our own success but also the success of our fellow local businesses. With other projects on the horizon, we hope to bring more along the way.”
Added ART-JIUS partner Owen Tonkins: “I'm thrilled to be returning to my hometown of Paterson to be a part of this exciting initiative. This project holds a special place in my heart as I was brought up by my grandmother. I eagerly anticipate engaging in more such dynamic ventures with Winn Development.”
Project Achieves Key Energy Sustainability Goals
The project set ambitious energy performance objectives and was successfully certified through both the Zero Energy Ready Homes and Energy Star Multifamily New Construction green building programs.The high-efficiency design features include continuous insulation and triple pane windows, energy recovery ventilation systems, high-efficiency heating and cooling equipment, LED lighting and ENERGY STAR appliances. The newly constructed residential building features a 97-kilowatt solar PV system on its roof, which will produce approximately 120,000 kilowatt hours of clean, renewable electricity every year, offsetting approximately 35 percent of the building’s electricity load.
“Mill Street Square compliments the historic look and feel of downtown Paterson, while delivering high-performance housing that goes above and beyond today’s energy code,” said Christina McPike, director of energy and sustainability for WinnCompanies. “As a Zero Energy Ready Homes certified community, Mill Street Square is an example of how we can develop environmentally responsible housing not only for today’s generation, but for future generations as well.”
Sixty-eight (68) new affordable units were created in a new construction four-story, wood-frame residential building, built with one podium of resident parking and a new, modern ground floor public parking lot managed by the Paterson Parking Authority, which prided a 99-year ground lease for the site.
The four-story Argus Mill, a brick-and-wood frame structure erected in the mid-1870s, serves as the gateway to the development, housing six apartments with open floor plans, hard-wood floors, exposed brick, high ceilings and floor to ceiling windows, and modern appliances. Originally built as a warehouse for a nearby textile mill, it was later used to manufacture mosquito netting and in the 1940s, became the Argus Yarn Mill. It was added to the National Historic Register in 1986 but has been vacant for many years.
Two other small historic structures, dating back to the early 1830s, known as the Thompson and Ryle Houses, were also renovated as part of the project. Thompson House will continue to house the PMP, which will be offering services to the children and grandparents of Mill Street Square. The Ryle House has been turned into an on-site management office for WinnResidential, the property management arm of WinnCompanies.
Convenient to nearby shopping, jobs and open space, the new community is less than a mile from the Paterson New Jersey Transit train station and a 5-minute walk from the Broadway Transit Bus Terminal. The property is adjacent to the Great Falls National Historical Park, an 800-acre urban state park centered on the Great Falls of the Passaic River, a 77-foot-tall waterfall, and a Natural Historic Landmark District.
Coppa Montalbano Architects of Totowa, NJ, was the architect; Paulus Sokolowski and Sartor Engineering (PS&S) of Warren, NJ, served as the civil engineer; Public Archaeology Laboratory, Inc. (PAL) served as historic consultant; ACME Heritage Consultants of Larchmont, NY, provided archaeological services; Renaissance Groups of Buffalo, NY, led efforts to recruit local and MWBE businesses; Friend and Wenzel of Clifton, NJ, provided local legal counsel; and, Berman Indictor of Philadelphia served as transactional counsel.
WinnCompanies is an award-winning, national owner, developer and manager of high-impact affordable, middle income, mixed-income, market rate and military housing communities. Founded in Boston in 1971 and supported by 3,800 team members in 23 states and the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, WinnCompanies is one of the nation’s leading multi-family housing managers with 105,600 residential and military apartment homes under management. It is a leading manager of affordable housing and privatized U.S. military housing in the United States. The company owns 125 apartment communities in 11 states and the District of Columbia.
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