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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Friday, Jun. 2, 2017 3 years ago

Orange County celebrates new affordable housing in Goldenrod area

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Goldenrod Pointe Apartment Homes is a 70-unit complex located south of University Boulevard, and it's the county's latest effort to help the homeless population.
by: Tim Freed Managing Editor

A new affordable living apartment complex has opened its doors to low-income families — part of an ongoing effort to combat homelessness in Orange County and give families in need a helping hand. 

The 70-unit Goldenrod Pointe Apartment Homes off Palmetto Avenue just south of University Boulevard celebrated its opening with a ribbon-cutting May 18. 

The complex has 20% of its units reserved for very low-income and homeless families and individuals ready to re-enter the housing market. As a tenant’s income progresses, the rent will adjust, freeing up the dedicated units for use by other very low-income and homeless families. The 14 reserved units will have standard rental housing obstacles removed, including waiving application fees, deposits and credit screening. Referrals for the units will come from network providers. 

“We’re committed to creating a variety of housing options that will foster a more inclusive housing market,” Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs said. “This new apartment complex is another great step forward as our region continues to offer more affordable housing options, ensure that our working families can find housing and provide our homeless families with the resources and support they need.” 

Orange County earmarked $2 million for the project, with half of it coming from INVEST funds and the other half from State Housing Initiatives Program funds. 

“We’re looking at all the tools available to help drive our policy and code, and encourage the private sector in a joint venture with us to build more inclusive communities,” Orange County Housing and Community Development Manager Mitchell Glasser said. “Inclusive communities include those that have a variety of housing types and incomes … and affordable housing is part of that picture.” 

Orange County also has contributed $1 million in INVEST funds to the Wayne Densch Center, a 77-unit permanent supportive housing community for homeless families and individuals. 

Construction for that facility is slated for this September, but the Goldenrod Pointe Apartments already are open to residents in need. 

“People who have had some bad luck or either a health problem or an emergency in their family that’s caused them to have to leave an apartment under difficult times … this gives them a second chance,” Jacobs said. 

Announced during Jacobs’ 2015 State of the County Address, the $300 million INVEST in Our Home for Life initiative began a series of projects across Orange County to provide long-term benefits to Orange County citizens.

Tim Freed was the managing editor for the West Orange Times & Observer and the Southwest Orange Observer. He previously spent six years covering the Winter Park/Maitland area and is a graduate of the University of Central Florida.

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