CHICAGO – The Chicago office of Merchants Capital recently secured a $35.6 million construction loan on behalf of HomeRise for the rehabilitation of San Cristina, a historic 58-unit single room occupancy (SRO) rental property located in San Francisco, which provides housing and support services to formerly homeless residents. The construction loan was provided by Merchants Bank of Indiana (MBI) with participation by the AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust (HIT).
Originally constructed in 1913 as an office building, San Cristina was acquired in 1991 by HomeRise and converted into one of the earliest permanent supportive housing communities in San Francisco. Upon completion, San Cristina will continue to provide affordable housing to the formerly unhoused and improve residents’ quality of life through enhanced support services offered by HomeRise.
“We are excited about the opportunity to restore our San Cristina housing to its historical glory. Our funding partnership with Merchants Capital is a vital part of our ability to continue to provide supported housing opportunities,” said Rick Aubry, CEO of HomeRise.
San Cristina was one of 27 projects to receive a 2022 California Housing Accelerator Award which allocated $24.2 million to the project as part of the state’s comprehensive strategy to address housing affordability for the state’s lowest-income households. In addition to the award, the project also received funding from the California Department of Housing and Community Development Multifamily Housing Program, the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development and the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco’s Affordable Housing Program through Century Housing Corporation.
“Merchants commends the ongoing efforts by HomeRise to provide housing and supportive services for San Francisco residents most in need,” said Lee Oller, Executive Vice President of Merchants Capital’s Chicago office. “The rehabilitation of this iconic building would not have been possible without the assistance from state and city partners in California. Together we can preserve affordable housing, while also creating union jobs that benefit the broader economy of local communities.”
“Our participation in the rehabilitation of the San Cristina property is part of the AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust’s continuing commitment under its billion-dollar Bay Area Initiative launched in 2020,” said HIT CEO Chang Suh. “This infusion of capital creates union jobs and provides much-needed housing for people who are at risk and experiencing homelessness.”
This investment by Merchants Capital and the AFL-CIO HIT marks the two firms’ second investment with HomeRise, after the recently completed Jazzie Collins Apartments located at 53 Colton Street in San Francisco’s Hub neighborhood.