NEW PORT RICHEY — Construction is under way on an apartment complex that will offer affordable housing for low-income seniors.
Michigan-based Wolgast Corp. is building an 80-unit apartment complex, named Magnolia Place, on Congress Street, between Indiana and Massachusetts avenues. It will be the company's second such development in West Pasco.
Wolgast also built the 108-unit Journet Place off Ridge Road in Port Richey, which offers low-income seniors affordable rental rates, according to Magnolia Place project director John DuPont.
Magnolia Place is scheduled to be completed late this year and will offer reduced rental rates based on tenants' income. The complex will be for residents 55 and up.
"It's going to be a very nice development," DuPont said.
DuPont said Magnolia Place is being built with tax credits from the Florida Housing Finance Corp., an organization enacted by the Florida Legislature to help provide affordable housing.
"It's a great program," DuPont said. "And with Journet we've proved ourselves in this area. It's a beautiful place that's been very successful."
City officials have historically worried about New Port Richey's high rate of rental properties. But Mayor Bob Consalvo said if a rental complex is being contructed in the city, he is glad it's gearing toward helping seniors and will add to the tax base.
He is also encouraged that it will likely drum up business for the nearby New Port Richey Recreation and Aquatic Center, which has been losing money over the years.
"It's good to see development starting up again. It's a good fit and it's going to help our rec center grow," Consalvo said. "And it's predominantly a rental area there, so it fits into that neighborhood. It's supposed to be top-end type housing, so that's going to help."
DuPont said New Port Richey is a good market for such a project, with its large amount of seniors and the Congress Street complex's proximity to the city's rec center and library.
The development will also have its own amenities, such as large gathering rooms for residents, as well as television and exercise rooms.
"Most of our seniors are very viable so they will have a lot of things to do," DuPont said. "It's really going to be an independent living facility for seniors who may need some help but are still very active."