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Venice (Madison County), IL: On Friday, July 30, The Madison County Housing Authority (MCHA) officially opened Meacham Crossing, a 78-apartment development in Venice, Illinois- their first venture as owner and manager.

Once an industrial powerhouse, Madison County today (population: 259,000) is a semi-rural county in southwestern Illinois, part of the “Metro East” suburbs of St. Louis, Missouri.  Madison County has been a client community of NDC for 14 years, with John Downs, NDC field director, providing technical assistance on variety of projects, that include NMTC, LIHTC, single family for-sale, economic development financing, and renewable energy.

This latest development is in the Madison County city of Venice (population: 2,500), where  MCHA decided to replace the obsolete Lee Wright Homes, a 1950′s era public housing complex.  The project demolished the old, existing units as the Meacham Crossing units become available, thus maximizing the opportunity for Lee Wright residents to move in.  While Madison County Housing Authority has been working with private developers using LIHTC and other resources to upgrade the quality of its affordable housing, this is the first project where MCHA is the developer and manager, a key step in their plan to insure the long term availability of high-quality, affordable housing.

The 18-acre Meacham Crossing offers a variety of units: 10 one-bedroom; 55 two-bedroom; and 23 three-bedroom. The modified townhouse style apartments provide modern amenities in a secure setting, designed to maximize opportunities for kids to play while providing parents with convenience in supervising their children.  Meacham Crossing also has 8 market rate units.  All 78 units were rented within 5 months of construction completion.

The 78 apartments are arranged in 24 buildings, each apartment with a private entrance.  The units will be all electric, with high efficiency furnaces and central A/C.  Each apartment will be wired for high speed internet, cable TV and phone in all rooms. Apartments will have nine-foot ceilings, and bedrooms will have ceiling fans.  All units will have laundry areas with installed washers and dryers.