Construction starts on mixed-income development in Fairpark

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Updated Rendering of the Bodhi Apartments as designed by the Vecino Design Build.
Construction site of the Bodhi Apartments. Photo by Isaac Riddle.

Seven months after breaking ground, construction is now underway on the Bodhi Apartments, a mixed-income affordable housing project directly west of Interstate 15 on the 700 West block of South Temple.

The project represents a collaboration between the Housing Authority of the County of Salt Lake and Missouri developers, the Vecino Group.

Updated Rendering of the Bodhi Apartments as designed by the Vecino Design Build.

The Bodhi will be five stories and consist of 80 residential units, 20 of which will be market rate with the remaining 60 units reserved as affordable units.  Of those sixty units, five units will be reserved for the chronically homeless, nine units will go to persons diagnosed with mental illness and nine will go to individuals with a mobility disability.  The remaining units will be reserved for individuals or families earning at or below 50 percent of the Area Median Income.

According to representatives from the Housing Authority, rents at the Bodhi will be lower than market rate because the county already owned the parcel and that upfront funding from federal low-income housing tax credits, state low-income housing tax credits from the Utah Housing Corporation and a loan from the Olene Walker Housing Loan Fund means that the project won’t have significant debt to repay.

The Salt Lake Community Action Program (SLCAP) will manage the project and will provide the on-site services.

The Bodhi apartments will occupy an area that is dominated to the south by underutilized and vacant land.  The project is a block away from the growing mixed-use node surrounding the 600 West and North Temple intersection.  The project is a block west from the North Sixth development, that like the Bodhi includes a mix of affordable and market-rate units.  If the Bodhi is successful, the project could be a catalyst for growth directly west of the Interstate.

The project is in close proximity to two TRAX stations and a commuter rail station.  The North Temple TRAX and Frontrunner stations are two blocks to the east, while the Jackson/Euclid TRAX station is just over a block to the west.

Projects close to TRAX and Frontrunner lines must apply for a Transit Station Area (TSA) Development Review Score.  Developments must score at least 100 to avoid going before the Planning Commission for project approval.  The Planning Division gave Bodhi Apartments a TSA score of 157 under the current scoring process and awarded the project maximum points for including structured parking, street frontage with high-quality materials, architectural detailing wrapping around the entire project, percentage of affordable housing and units per acre.

The project will cost an estimated $12 million and is funded through Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits and $1 million from the Olene Walker Housing Trust.

A google map aerial view of the proposed site for the Bodhi Apartments pinned at 750 West South Temple. Image courtesy of Google Maps.

*This is an updated version of a previous post.

About Isaac Riddle 579 Articles
Isaac Riddle grew up just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah. He has a BA in English literature from the University of Utah and a Masters of Journalism from Temple University. Isaac has written for Next City, The Philadelphia Public School Notebook and Salt Lake City Weekly. Before embarking on a career in journalism, Isaac taught High School English in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia. Isaac is the founder of Building Salt Lake and can be reached at isaac@buildingsaltlake.com.