Oct 19, 2023
Karam Senior Living Project, the development of affordable senior housing, and a new branch of the Cleveland Public Library at West 80th Street and Detroit Avenue.
The recent award provides a path forward for this transformational, $22 million project, the construction of which was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Council has been intending to use the American Rescue Plan Act and revenue recovery funds for tangible projects that improve or help Cleveland residents and neighborhoods. Councilmember Jenny Spencer had advocated for the project and sponsored the legislation.
Karam Senior Living will provide 51 residential units to seniors who earn 60% or less of the area median income (AMI). The new, energy-efficient, accessible building will hold spaces for social connection and wrap-around programming with a new Walz library branch, developed in partnership with the Cleveland Public Library on the building’s ground floor.
“Cleveland Public Library is committed to a new, five-star library in a joint facility with Karam Senior Living, to meet a wide range of community needs and serve as a neighborhood anchor,” said Cleveland Public Library Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer Felton Thomas, Jr. “This investment in our Walz branch is part of our 10-year plan to reimagine all 27 of our branch libraries through renovation, expansion, and new library construction for stronger neighborhoods, and to fulfill our commitment to all Clevelanders.”
Cleveland voters in 2017 approved a 10-year, 2-mill increase in the library’s property tax levy. With those funds, Cleveland Public Library will rebuild or replace all 27 neighborhood branches for $100 million and renovate the Main Library downtown for $65 million. Construction is already done or underway on multiple library branches throughout the city.
As the culmination of years of community efforts, Karam Senior Living will address an urgent need for quality, affordable housing for vulnerable seniors while simultaneously creating a multigenerational hub for community services.
Northwest Neighborhoods CDC (formerly Detroit Shoreway) secured Low-Income Housing Tax Credits for the project from the Ohio Housing Finance Agency in 2021.