The Resurrection Project http://resurrectionproject.org The Resurrection Project Fri, 17 Apr 2015 16:21:11 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 TRP helping families on the path to homeownership http://resurrectionproject.org/trp-putting-families-on-the-path-to-homeownership/ http://resurrectionproject.org/trp-putting-families-on-the-path-to-homeownership/#comments Thu, 16 Apr 2015 19:28:04 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=6084 April 14, 2015 For Immediate Release Media Contact: Diana Pando /312-880-1140 The Resurrection Project (TRP) will be hosting their Second Annual Housing Within Reach Homeownership Fair on Saturday, April 25th from 9AM to 1PM at the Cicero Community Center, 2250 S. 49th Street, Cicero, IL 60804. The goal of the free event is to educate […]

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April 14, 2015

For Immediate Release

Media Contact: Diana Pando /312-880-1140

The Resurrection Project (TRP) will be hosting their Second Annual Housing Within Reach Homeownership Fair on Saturday, April 25th from 9AM to 1PM at the Cicero Community Center, 2250 S. 49th Street, Cicero, IL 60804. The goal of the free event is to educate attendees on the home purchase process, and to help struggling homeowners keep their homes.

HousingWhen families are able to purchase homes or prevent them from going into foreclosure they stabilize neighborhoods from blight. Many individuals and families come to the event looking for information on how to purchase their first home.

“One of the obstacles people face when they want to purchase a home is knowing where to start,” said Denise Reyes, TRP’s Home Purchase Manager. “The counselors at TRP help you navigate the steps to home ownership.”

Throughout the day, attendees also had access to free workshops on the loan pre-approval process and down payment assistance programs. Attendees who are on the brink of losing their homes will also receive foreclosure prevention assistance. Foreclosure prevention education is important at this event because it gives people the opportunity to find solutions to keep their homes.

Families will be able to meet and answer any questions they might have about the home purchase process and financial products.

The Financial Wellness Department at The Resurrection Project works year-round to provide free financial literacy education to help people achieve their financial goals including home ownership. The goal of the workshops is cultivating long-term financial stability in our communities.

PHOTOS AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST

For more information on free homeownership workshops call: 312-880-1137 or log on to www.resurrectionproject.org

 

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TRP’s home purchase workshops helps make a family’s dream come true http://resurrectionproject.org/trps-home-purchase-workshops-helps-make-a-familys-dream-come-true/ http://resurrectionproject.org/trps-home-purchase-workshops-helps-make-a-familys-dream-come-true/#comments Thu, 02 Apr 2015 17:09:40 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=6064 by Diana Pando Livia Zenteno was living in a cramped apartment in Cicero with her family. Her two children couldn’t even play because the landlord did not want them running or making too much noise. She and her family had been renting for a while but decided they wanted something better. They began the process […]

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by Diana Pando

Livia Zenteno was living in a cramped apartment in Cicero with her family. Her two children couldn’t even play because the landlord did not want them running or making too much noise. She and her family had been renting for a while but decided they wanted something better. They began the process of looking to purchase a home. Or so she thought.

For two years they went through the process with different banks and real estate agents. She often had questions about the paperwork needed but no one would return her calls. She and her family struggled because they didn’t understand the process. They received conflicting, confusing information from banks, who told them several times that they did not qualify for a loan because of their income.

Their struggles were typical of many immigrant families. A new report release earlier this year by Zillow and the National Urban League examined access to housing. It noted different outcomes for minority groups trying to secure mortgages and purchase homes that differed greatly from white Americans. Minorities get priced out of the housing market when they are unable to take out housing loans.

According to the Washington Post, “Black and Hispanic borrowers tend to have lower incomes and less-favorable credit histories, those groups have been disproportionately affected by the tough new standards, bankers and consumer advocates said.”

To counter these trends, TRP has provided hundreds of individuals with free financial literacy and home purchase workshops. In 2013, TRP and Self-Help Federal Credit Union spearheaded the rescue of the failed Second Federal Savings and Loan, which became Second Federal Credit Union (SFCU). The new partnership became an opportunity to expand the reach of TRP’s home preservation efforts. Since then, TRP has been working with individuals and families at SFCU to get them on a path to home ownership.

Determined to not give up on her dream of owning a home, Livia enrolled in TRP’s home purchase workshops at SFCU, unsure what to expect or if anything would come from participating. During the workshops, she and her husband learned new skills. “We learned the importance of our credit score and how to improve it,” notes Livia. “It was also valuable to learn about managing credit cards and budgeting.”

After successfully completing TRP’s workshop series, they renewed their housing search. “I felt motivated by working with the TRP staff,” she says. “There was always someone there holding our hand through the process and making sure the bank had everything they needed.”

Livia and her husband were able to secure an immigrant-friendly loan through SFCU with an interest rate within their budget. This loan is specifically designed for immigrant communities who have limited or damaged credit and provides low down payments and fair interest rates. It is a loan conceived by the partnership between TRP, Self-Help, and SFCU to create sound financial products tailored for the largely immigrant communities of Chicago’s Southwest side.

Today, Livia and her husband are proud first-time homeowners. “If the immigrant loan through Second Federal Credit Union was not available, we’d still be renting,” says Livia. “TRP’s home purchase workshop series was an investment in our future.”

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Nueva Vida March 2015: The TRP Newsletter http://resurrectionproject.org/nueva-vida-march-2015-the-trp-newsletter/ http://resurrectionproject.org/nueva-vida-march-2015-the-trp-newsletter/#comments Tue, 24 Mar 2015 15:44:04 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=6006 The post Nueva Vida March 2015: The TRP Newsletter appeared first on The Resurrection Project.

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From La Casa to your casa: A Chicago Latina activist on the rise http://resurrectionproject.org/from-la-casa-to-your-casa-a-chicago-latina-activist-on-the-rise/ http://resurrectionproject.org/from-la-casa-to-your-casa-a-chicago-latina-activist-on-the-rise/#comments Tue, 24 Mar 2015 15:34:14 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=6013                 by Claudia Martinez Free-spirited, activist, and passionate are just some words that describe Debbie Patiño. Her strong interest in the human and social experience led her to pursue a double major in Sociology and Applied Psychology. Currently, Debbie is a student at the University of Illinois at […]

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by Claudia Martinez

Free-spirited, activist, and passionate are just some words that describe Debbie Patiño. Her strong interest in the human and social experience led her to pursue a double major in Sociology and Applied Psychology. Currently, Debbie is a student at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and a member of the Fearless Undocumented Alliance at UIC fighting for undocumented rights. “Although I am not undocumented,” she says,“these issues also affect me because they impact friends that are really close to me.”

Debbie was raised in Carpentersville, a small northwest suburb with a primarily immigrant population. Living there, she saw many injustices and anti-immigrant laws against Latinos. “These policies were a rejection of my culture and made me feel like being Mexican and speaking Spanish was wrong,” she says.The experience pushed her to keep up with her community activism work, which she believes is the best way to fix pressing social issues. Some of the work she has done includes doing research on the history of Hispanics in Elgin, IL.

In Pilsen, she did research on community needs, including housing and food. She recently had an internship with Mujeres Latinas en Acción where she created a sex education curriculum for children ages 6-12 years old. Debbie also started interning for the Illinois Coalition of Public Policy, where she helps collect data on congressmen and issues they have voted on.

She is also working on her honors capstone project at UIC, where she will focus on two Chicago families as case studies for how families have been affected by the increase in deportations during the Obama administration. Debbie decided to get a more global experience by studying abroad in Indonesia. “This experience changed my life completely,” she says. “It strengthened my convictions on who I am and my passions.”

This semester, Debbie moved to La Casa Student Housing and thinks it’s a great environment and recognizes La Casa’s commitment to its students. “People at La Casa are kind and willing to get to know you,” she says. “All the people in charge show support and are genuinely dedicated to the students and how they are doing.”

La Casa’s active community is also something that has helped Debbie. “Being in a neighborhood like Pilsen is also great because it’s an activist community,” she says.“I’ve had a great experience so far at La Casa and encourage everyone to apply.”

This year, Debbie will graduate from UIC. In 10 years, she sees herself in a position of power to make social change and be a leader in various communities.“I want to work with immigration reform because it’s something really important to me,” she says.

In the meantime, she continues to pursue her education. She recently applied for the Fulbright Program and successfully became a finalist. If she gets it, she will have the opportunity to do research in Chiapas, Mexico. She encourages other students to follow their passion and dreams. “Follow what you love,” she says. “Use your intuition, and be selfish in the right ways.”

For more information on La Casa Student Housing, visit www.lacasastudenthousing.org.

Claudia Martinez is a La Casa student who is interning with TRP. From La Casa toYour Casa is her inside glimpse of life at La Casa Student Housing.

Return to Nueva Vida March 2015 here.

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TRP apartments helping people thrive in Chicago http://resurrectionproject.org/trp-apartments-helping-people-thrive-in-chicago/ http://resurrectionproject.org/trp-apartments-helping-people-thrive-in-chicago/#comments Tue, 24 Mar 2015 15:28:27 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=6009                     By Diana Pando For many families and individuals, finding affordable housing continues to be a local and national struggle. Curbed.com recently reported that 3,000 apartments are under construction in downtown Chicago, with rents in some starting at $2,000 a month.While there is no shortage of housing […]

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GUERRERO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Diana Pando

For many families and individuals, finding affordable housing continues to be a local and national struggle. Curbed.com recently reported that 3,000 apartments are under construction in downtown Chicago, with rents in some starting at $2,000 a month.While there is no shortage of housing in this area, most people who work downtown simply can’t afford to live there. Many renters are already spending more than 30% of their wages on housing.

Contributing to this trend is the wage gap that continues to grow. According to a 2014 National Low Incoming Housing Coalition study, “In Chicago you need to make between $18.25 and $19.25 an hour to afford a typical two-bedroom rental.” Between housing expenses and the wage gap, many families and individuals are unable to save money.

One of these people was Vincent Garcia, who works downtown and was living in Brookfield. His commute going to and from work every day would range from 45 minutes to an hour. He was also spending a lot of money on gas and that, combined with his rent, didn’t allow him to save.

He decided to move into the city and began looking for apartments in the Bridgeport and Taylor Street areas. He wanted to find a place within his budget where he could live comfortably.Vincent searched for an apartment for a while but just couldn’t find something that he could afford.“Rent is high everywhere now,” said Vincent.“They want a lot of money for a one-bedroom or small studio.”

His luck changed when he happened to drive past Casa Maravilla,The Resurrection Project’s senior housing apartment complex. He saw a sign for TRP’s Property Management department and called to see if they had vacancies.An occupancy specialist walked him through the process of applying and he ended up moving into TRP’s Casa Guerrero, a 25-unit apartment complex in Pilsen.

One of the things Vincent noticed immediately was that the apartments are comfortable and the building is well maintained. He remembers repairing things himself and shoveling the snow at his old apartment.At Casa Guerrero, he knows TRP’s property management is always there to help. He also appreciates that his whole paycheck isn’t going towards rent.“Living at Casa Guerrero is allowing me to save money for other things. I’m grateful for the work TRP does with housing in the community.”

For the past 25 years,The Resurrection Project has been working to provide more than just housing.Tenants like Vincent also have free access to TRP’s full range of services, including financial literacy, citizenship, community leadership, and home purchase workshops.The goal is to activate residents like Vincent to imagine more for themselves.

TRP understands the needs of families and individuals who need dignified and quality living spaces and is working with communities and local officials to create more community assets. Recently,TRP hosted a series of open houses in the Back of the Yards neighborhood to showcase its spacious and affordable apartments.

This comes on the heels of the latest community housing victory, Casa Querétaro, a brand new, 45- unit complex of quality, affordable apartments being developed by TRP. The building will transform the Pilsen landscape and provide safe, clean, new apartments for individuals and families.

Return to Nueva Vida March 2015 here.

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JPMorgan Chase to be Presenting Sponsor of The Resurrection Project’s 25th Anniversary Gala http://resurrectionproject.org/jpmorgan-chase-presenting-sponsor-resurrection-projects-25th-anniversary-gala/ http://resurrectionproject.org/jpmorgan-chase-presenting-sponsor-resurrection-projects-25th-anniversary-gala/#comments Wed, 11 Mar 2015 16:56:10 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=5931 Media Contact: Diana Pando 312-880-1140/dpando@resurrectionproject.org         To underscore its commitment to creating pathways of opportunity for families and communities through Chicago, JPMorgan Chase will serve as Presenting Sponsor of The Resurrection Project’s 25th Anniversary Gala. On Thursday, October 22, 2015, JPMorgan Chase will join hundreds of other civic and business leaders from […]

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Media Contact: Diana Pando

312-880-1140/dpando@resurrectionproject.org

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To underscore its commitment to creating pathways of opportunity for families and communities through Chicago, JPMorgan Chase will serve as Presenting Sponsor of The Resurrection Project’s 25th Anniversary Gala. On Thursday, October 22, 2015, JPMorgan Chase will join hundreds of other civic and business leaders from the region to celebrate TRP’s quarter century of impact in Chicago and promote its vision for future investment.

“For 25 years, TRP has been addressing complex economic and social challenges throughout its communities,” said Melissa Bean, Chase’s Illinois State President. “We are proud to have partnered with them with them since 1990 to create pathways to opportunity for families the Chicagoland region through initiatives in affordable housing, community development, financial capability.”

CHASE_FINALSince 1990, JPMorgan and TRP have been working to create vibrant healthy communities. Over a quarter of a century, J.P. Morgan Chase and The Resurrection Project developed affordable housing and provide financial coaching services to help low- and moderate- income families improve their financial health and achieve dreams ranging from home ownership to entrepreneurship. The collaboration has leveraged and preserved $80 million in community investment.

“We are excited to have JPMorgan Chase as a presenting sponsor at our 25th Anniversary celebration because thanks to their investment and commitment to the community we will be able to leverage their investment to activate key initiatives that strengthen neighborhoods,” said Raul Raymundo, TRP’s CEO. “As we begin to imagine the next 25 years, we hope to continue working with JPMorgn Chase to invest in, empower, and transform communities.”

The Resurrection Project’s Imagine More 25th Anniversary Gala will be held on October 22, 2015 at Chicago’s prestigious Drake Hotel. The gala will feature testimony and commendation from Chicago area dignitaries, a cocktail reception and dinner, and performances showcasing Latino culture. More information about our gala is available at http://resurrectionproject.org/imagine-25th-anniversary-gala.

About JPMorgan Chase

Chase is the U.S. consumer and commercial banking business of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM), a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.3 trillion and operations in more than 60 countries.  We are the neighborhood bank for thousands of communities across the country.  We serve approximately one of out of every six Americans through more than 5,500 bank branches; 18,000 ATMs; mortgage offices; online and mobile banking; as well as relationships with auto dealerships, schools and universities.

About The Resurrection Project
Since 1990, The Resurrection Project has revitalized predominantly low-income Latino communities on Chicago’s Southwest side through a variety of community development strategies. The organization started with $30,000 in seed capital collected from concerned neighbors and area churches. Since then, TRP has leveraged the initial investment into $346 million in community investment to empower more than 38,500 families.

To request information on TRP’s Imagine More 25th Anniversary event, please contact Ed Vogel, Donor Relations Manager, at 312-374-4468 or Evogel@resurrectionproject.org.

Return to Nueva Vida March 2015 here.

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U.S. Bank awards The Resurrection Project $80,000 to build initiatives to support entrepreneurism on the Southwest Side of Chicago http://resurrectionproject.org/u-s-bank-gives-resurrection-project-80000-build-initiatives-support-entrepreneurism-southwest-side-chicago/ http://resurrectionproject.org/u-s-bank-gives-resurrection-project-80000-build-initiatives-support-entrepreneurism-southwest-side-chicago/#comments Wed, 11 Feb 2015 16:16:08 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=5884 Media Contact: Diana Pando – 312-880-1140 dpando@resurrectionproject.org     Thanks to an $80,000 grant from U.S. Bank, The Resurrection Project (TRP) will begin delivering small business development programs to help entrepreneurs, ranging from start-ups to established businesses in its largely-Latino Southwest Side Chicago target service area, access the capital necessary to grow, create jobs, and […]

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Media Contact: Diana Pando – 312-880-1140
dpando@resurrectionproject.org

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Thanks to an $80,000 grant from U.S. Bank, The Resurrection Project (TRP) will begin delivering small business development programs to help entrepreneurs, ranging from start-ups to established businesses in its largely-Latino Southwest Side Chicago target service area, access the capital necessary to grow, create jobs, and contribute to the fabric of communities. This grant will underwrite TRP’s ability to support up to 300 entrepreneurs with education and technical assistance to access the capital necessary to create or retain up to 250 jobs per year.

“A thriving startup scene can have a tremendous impact on the surrounding community – take what we’ve seen in the River North of Near West Side for example. Access to capital is a critical component, and often the primary obstacle, to getting this type of entrepreneurial culture off the ground. The Resurrection Project helps solve for that,” said Marsha Cruzan, Chicago market president for U.S. Bank.

For 25 years, TRP has been creating economic development across the city’s Southwest Side. For more than a decade, U.S. Bank and The Resurrection Project have been working together to develop affordable housing and provide financial education and counseling services to help low- and moderate- income families achieve and preserve home ownership. The collaboration has leveraged and preserved more than $28 million in community investment. Deepening this partnership with small business development support, the collaboration is poised to grow that community investment exponentially.

“We thank U.S. Bank for their commitment in helping create economic opportunities that produce long-term poverty reduction in the Chicago region,” said Raul Raymundo, CEO of TRP. “U.S. Bank’s commitment to help us build healthy communities through our entrepreneurship program will accelerate economic growth and job creation in Chicago’s Southwest Side communities.”

TRP’s Entrepreneurial Training Program provides small business education programming that includes: one-on-one counseling; coaching capacity for entrepreneurs to start or grow their businesses, and; aid in promoting the vitality of the community. The program will support a diverse group of Chicago entrepreneurs—especially those from our targeted neighborhoods of Pilsen, Little Village, Back of the Yards, and suburban Melrose Park.

About U.S. Bank

U.S. Bank employs nearly 2,500 people in Chicago. U.S. Bancorp (NYSE: USB), with $403 billion in assets as of December 31, 2014, is the parent company of U.S. Bank National Association, the 5th largest commercial bank in the United States. The company operates 3,176 banking offices in 25 states and 5,022 ATMs and provides a comprehensive line of banking, brokerage, insurance, investment, mortgage, trust and payment services products to consumers, businesses and institutions. Visit U.S. Bancorp on the web at www.usbank.com.

About The Resurrection Project
Since 1990, The Resurrection Project has revitalized predominantly low-income Latino communities on Chicago’s Southwest side through a variety of community development strategies. The organization started with $30,000 in seed capital collected from concerned neighbors and area churches. Since then, TRP has leveraged those $30,000 into $346 million in community investments and wealth preserved.

For more information about The Resurrection Project’s Entrepreneurship Training Program, call 312-763-3228 or E-mail asoto@resurrectionproject.org. Visit TRP’s website at www.resurrectionproject.org.

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Return to Nueva Vida March 2015 here.

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Casa Querétaro under construction; TRP celebrates with shovel ceremony http://resurrectionproject.org/casa-queretaro-construction-trp-celebrates-shovel-ceremony/ http://resurrectionproject.org/casa-queretaro-construction-trp-celebrates-shovel-ceremony/#comments Mon, 09 Feb 2015 20:29:40 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=5864 Story by Diana Pando. Photos by Eddie Quiñones On Thursday, February 5, 2015, The Resurrection Project (TRP), Deputy Mayor Steve Koch, Alderman Daniel “Danny” Solis, partners, and community stakeholders celebrated the start of Casa Queretaro’s construction with a shovel ceremony. Casa Querétaro, now under construction on the corner of 17th and Damen, will create 45 […]

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Story by Diana Pando. Photos by Eddie Quiñones

On Thursday, February 5, 2015, The Resurrection Project (TRP), Deputy Mayor Steve Koch, Alderman Daniel “Danny” Solis, partners, and community stakeholders celebrated the start of Casa Queretaro’s construction with a shovel ceremony. Casa Querétaro, now under construction on the corner of 17th and Damen, will create 45 units of quality, affordable housing in Pilsen. More than 100 people attended the ceremony, which was held at Orozco Community Academy and kicked off a yearlong celebration leading up to TRP’s Imagine More 25th Anniversary Gala.

Casa Querétaro will be a four-story state-of-the-art, energy-efficient building that will replace the empty lot on the corner of Damen and 17th Street. Units will be available at below-market rates to provide quality, affordable housing options for individuals and families.

This project is almost 20 years in the making and a result of neighbors and community leaders advocating to convert the empty lot into a vibrant community asset. The abandoned silos that used to be on the empty light attracted drug users, criminals, and vandals, creating an unsafe space for neighbors and the children of Orozco Academy across the street.

“Casa Querétaro will be made possible thanks to power of community organizing to effect change and positively transform the neighborhood,” said Raul Raymundo, CEO of TRP, as he introduced Alicia Rocha and Father Charles Dahm, longtime Pilsen residents who were part of the effort to transform the vacant lot.

Juanita and Arturo Gallegos, TRP tenants, spoke about the importance of quality homes that are wheelchair accessible.

Juanita and Arturo Gallegos, TRP tenants, spoke about the importance of quality homes that are wheelchair accessible.

“The silos and vacant lot,” said Alicia Rocha, “were a magnet for criminal activity, garbage, and rat infestations. We were a forgotten and neglected street. But thanks to the work of The Resurrection Project and Alderman Solis, there will be housing for families and individuals. It will create a vibrant and healthy neighborhood for everyone in that area.”

Casa Querétaro will have five wheelchair-accessible units. Two TRP tenants, Juanita and Arturo Gallegos, stressed the importance of quality, affordable homes that were also handicapped accessible.

“It’s important that more developers do what The Resurrection Project is doing to provide accessible apartments,” said Arturo Gallegos, who is blind. “We pay taxes too, and it’s not easy finding good apartments that are accessible and affordable.”

Casa Querétaro was made possible thanks to the support of key partners, all of whom spoke at the event.

Deputy Mayor Steve Koch spoke on Mayor Emanuel's behalf.

Deputy Mayor Steve Koch spoke on Mayor Emanuel’s behalf.

“The investment in Casa Queretaro is part of our Five Year Housing Plan which entails a citywide commitment to creating more affordable housing for families in the City of Chicago,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “This project represents a much-anticipated transformation of underutilized land that will positively impact and address the needs of this community and provide additional rental housing for Chicago’s families.”

Deputy Mayor Steve Koch attended the event on Mayor Emanuel’s behalf and also stressed the importance of sustaining initiatives such as Casa Querétaro throughout the city of Chicago.

“Citi is proud to work with the City of Chicago and community organizations to support the expansion of affordable housing,” said George Wright, the Midwest Region Director of Community Development for Citibank. “Through collaborative partnerships like Casa Querétaro, we can strengthen local communities and provide a new platform of opportunity for families in Chicago.” Citibank is providing $8.5 million as bond financing that will be used during the construction of Casa Queretaro.

George Wright, Midwest Region Director of Community Development for Citibank.

George Wright, Midwest Region Director of Community Development for Citibank.

“We are very excited about this partnership,” said Michael R. Merchant, CEO of the Chicago Housing Authority, which committed $4.5 million toward the development of Casa Queretaro. “TRP and CHA share the same goals. We are working together toward the same vision for the city of Chicago.”

“TRP’s Casa Guerrero was one of the first properties I was assigned to oversee and my introduction to TRP,” said Mike Jacobs, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions/Originations of the National Equity Fund. “Since then I’ve gone on to do a number of things at NEF and currently oversee all originations across the country. Nowhere have I found a group more dedicated to its community, its residents, and the elements that make life worth living than at TRP. Providing safe affordable housing is as personal to them as it is to me and it makes me proud of my long association with TRP.” National Equity Fund provided $5.3 million in equity from 4% Low Income Housing Tax Credits proceeds to finance this project.

Alderman Daniel "Danny" Solis of the 25th Ward.

Alderman Daniel “Danny” Solis of the 25th Ward.

Alderman Daniel “Danny” Solis of the 25th Ward also commented on the importance of projects like Casa Querétaro to transform the community. “Our partnership with TRP has helped to create nearly 250 units of quality, affordable housing in the 25th Ward,” said Solis. “It’s important that we create good, quality homes for working-class and low-income families to live in dignity.”

Father Charles Dahm closed out the speaking portion of the ceremony with a blessing for the neighborhood, the construction crews working on Casa Querétaro, and its future tenants.

Speakers then lined up for the ceremonial groundbreaking to conclude the celebration.

Speakers and guests gather for the ceremonial groundbreaking of Casa Querétaro.

Speakers and guests gather for the ceremonial groundbreaking of Casa Querétaro.

The shovel ceremony for Casa Querétaro marks the start of a yearlong celebration leading up to TRP’s 25th Anniversary Gala in October. “TRP has impacted our communities with projects like Casa Querétaro since 1990,” says Raymundo. “We are excited about our 25th anniversary, but more excited about our plans to expand our services and projects so that we help transform more neighborhoods in the years to come.”

Casa Querétaro represents a $15 million investment in Chicago’s Pilsen community that will also spur jobs and economic opportunity. The project is possible thanks to significant investment from the following financing partners: City of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development, City of Chicago Ogden TIF, Citi Community Capital, Chicago Housing Authority and The National Equity Fund. The architects for the new apartment building are DesignBridge Ltd. Construction will be managed by DENCO Construction, Inc.

The building is scheduled to for completion in December 2015, and leasing is expected to begin in October 2015.

To see more photos from the event, visit us on Facebook!

Return to Nueva Vida March 2015 here.

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Nueva Vida January 2015: The TRP Newsletter http://resurrectionproject.org/nueva-vida-january-2015-trp-newsletter/ http://resurrectionproject.org/nueva-vida-january-2015-trp-newsletter/#comments Thu, 29 Jan 2015 17:14:22 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=5814 The post Nueva Vida January 2015: The TRP Newsletter appeared first on The Resurrection Project.

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Casa Querétaro, now under construction, reclaims a vacant lot for the community http://resurrectionproject.org/casa-queretaro-now-under-construction-reclaims-a-vacant-lot-for-the-community/ http://resurrectionproject.org/casa-queretaro-now-under-construction-reclaims-a-vacant-lot-for-the-community/#comments Thu, 29 Jan 2015 17:08:56 +0000 http://resurrectionproject.org/?p=5809 by Diana Pando For more than 20 years, the lot on the corner of Damen and 17th street has been an eyesore to the community. It has been a dump site, a shooting range for drug users, a breeding ground for rat infestations, and an unsafe area for residents and the children of nearby Orozco Community […]

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by Diana Pando

casaQ-CORNER VIEW-SILLS2For more than 20 years, the lot on the corner of Damen and 17th street has been an eyesore to the community. It has been a dump site, a shooting range for drug users, a breeding ground for rat infestations, and an unsafe area for residents and the children of nearby Orozco Community Academy.

That is all about to change.

The Resurrection Project (TRP) has begun construction on Casa Querétaro, a brand new, 45-unit complex of quality affordable apartments that will transform the landscape and provide safe, clean, new apartments for individuals and families.

This project is almost 20 years in the making and a result of neighbors and community leaders advocating for change. In the mid 90s,TRP and area residents organized to tear down the abandoned silos that used to be on the vacant lot.The silos were a magnet for vandalism and criminal activity, and the site itself was often used to burn tires, creating a health hazard for area families and children.

“There were incidents of vandalism, robberies, and an influx of strangers coming in and out of the abandoned silos,” says Alicia Rocha, a lifelong Pilsen resident.

“The structures were falling apart and were an eye soar for the community,” says Raul Hernandez, another Pilsen resident and TRP board member. “There was a lot of garbage accumulating in the area that created a rat infestation.”

TRP began to work with community members, parishes, and elected officials to have the silos torn down. But even with the silos torn down, the lot remained a challenge for the community. For years,TRP tried to convert the empty lot into a healthy community space.

“We saw an opportunity to reclaim a once-dangerous space for the community,” says Raul Raymundo, CEO of The Resurrection Project.“We wanted to create a new building that would transform the landscape while also creating quality, affordable housing so that families could stay in Pilsen.”

The opportunity became reality late last year, when TRP closed the deal to begin construction on Casa Querétaro.

TRP will celebrate alongside dignitaries, partners, and community stakeholders with a shovel ceremony on February 5, 2015.

Construction of Casa Querétaro is expected to be complete in December 2015, and leasing for the new units will begin in October.The 45 units will be available at below-market rates.

“Casa Querétaro will help keep individuals and families from being priced out of the Pilsen neighborhood,” says Guacolda Reyes,Vice President of Economic Development at TRP.

YELLOW-ENTRY VIEW-SILLSMore importantly, Casa Querétaro will reclaim a once-dangerous empty lot and convert it to a new space where families can live and grow as part of the community. It will remove a dangerous empty space near Orozco Academy, and transform the area with a beautiful new building.

This is a victory for the neighborhood and its years-long fight to convert this space into a new community asset.

Casa Querétaro by the numbers

Casa Querétaro will include green architecture, high-efficiency central air and heat systems, Energy Star appliances, and floor materials that include 75% recycled content.

This project represents a $15 million investment in Chicago’s Pilsen community that will also spur jobs and economic opportunity.

The project is possible thanks to significant investment from the following financing partners: City of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development, City of Chicago Ogden TIF, Citi Community Capital, Chicago Housing Authority and The National Equity Fund.

The architects for the new apartment building are Design Bridge Ltd. DENCO Construction Inc. will manage the construction.

The building is scheduled to for completion in December 2015.

Return to Nueva Vida January 2015 here.

 

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