Cleveland Development Advisors today announced $9 million in new commitments to help stimulate projects with measurable social impacts in the Cleveland neighborhoods of Clark-Fulton, Glenville and Buckeye-Kinsman, and the immediately surrounding areas.
JPMorgan Chase is investing $5 million over three years to expand access to opportunity in Cleveland’s target neighborhoods so more residents can share in the rewards of a growing economy. This investment is part of the company’s sixth Partnership for Raising Opportunity in Neighborhoods (PRO Neighborhoods) competition to support neighborhood development projects and promote inclusive growth across communities in the U.S.
Cleveland is one of only seven winning submissions in this year’s national competition for philanthropic funding. Overall this year, JPMorgan Chase received 75 applications covering 49 U.S. cities to support capital and planning projects. The successful application was submitted by Cleveland Development Advisors, the real estate and business development financing affiliate of the Greater Cleveland Partnership, and Finance Fund Capital Corporation, a nonprofit real estate developer serving Ohio.
Cleveland Development Advisors will add $3.75 million to JPMorgan Chase?s commitment, and form and oversee a revolving loan fund that will offer qualifying developers financing at below market lending rates. Finance Fund Capital Corporation will provide real estate technical assistance.
These neighborhoods have an average poverty rate of 44 percent and an unemployment rate of 25 percent, which exceeds the city?s overall poverty rate of 31 percent and jobless rate of 18 percent.
The nearly $9 million in commitments will be coupled with other incentives to attract projects that residents of the neighborhoods have identified as top priorities:? affordable housing, access to fresh food and greenspace, access to living wage jobs, workforce development, digital connectivity and support of small businesses and minority entrepreneurs.
“This commitment from JPMorgan Chase and the matching loan funds from Cleveland Development Advisors will give us another significant tool to leverage new investments aimed at benefitting residents of the Clark-Fulton, Glenville and Buckeye-Kinsman neighborhoods,” Mayor Frank Jackson said. “These funds will complement my Neighborhood Transformation Initiative, which has designated all or parts of these neighborhoods for economic development funding and other assistance.”
|NRP Group is building a $60 million mixed-income apartment
complex in the Clark-Fulton neighborhood. The new funding
awarded today can help put more opportunities within walking
distance of this and other new housing developments (RDL).
“Helping more people share in the rewards of a growing economy is critical for the long-term viability of Cleveland,” said Rudy Bentlage, Market Leader for JPMorgan Chase in Northeast Ohio. “We have an important role in working with the local leaders and community partners to identify solutions that promote growth, development and collaboration. This investment is a great example of this partnership at work and we?re proud to work with Cleveland Development Advisors to ensure that more residents have the resources they need to grow and thrive.”
Yvette Ittu, Cleveland Development Advisors President, said the new funds will help to attract additional incentive financing including Opportunity Zone funds to these neighborhoods. Federally-sanctioned Opportunity Zones offer tax breaks for investors as an incentive to attract and assist development projects in designated areas.
“We’re very focused on trying to attract projects to these neighborhoods that will improve the lives of the residents there,” Ittu said. “These dollars complement our work, and our community’s work, by strategically investing in neighborhoods that can benefit from it the most. This grant from JPMorgan Chase ? when bundled with the city’s incentives, other public and private monies and the Opportunity Zone designations ??allows us greater ability to attract, encourage and assist investment and development to empower these neighborhoods.”
Since 1989, Cleveland Development Advisors has invested nearly $450 million in more than 135 projects in Greater Cleveland that have resulted in 6,750 new housing units and seven million square feet of commercial space.
Cleveland City Councilman Blaine Griffin, whose ward includes a neighborhood selected for the new investments, lauded the announcement.
“This is great news for three Cleveland neighborhoods that have experienced years of abandonment, disinvestment and neglect,” said Councilman Griffin. “And I commend JPMorgan Chase and Cleveland Development Advisors for this infusion of much needed capital that will surely help in the revitalization efforts already happening in these neighborhoods.”
Finance Fund Capital Corporation has worked with Cleveland Development Advisors previously on a wide range of community development projects in the Cleveland area. The organizations will partner in working with the neighborhoods and local community development corporations including Famicos, MetroWest and Burten Bell Carr.
“This investment from JPMorgan Chase gives us another opportunity to work successfully with Cleveland Development Advisors to help create positive change in Cleveland neighborhoods driven by local residents,” said Diana Turoff, President and CEO of Finance Fund Capital Corporation. “Our past working relationships with Cleveland Development Advisors and neighborhood organizations in Cleveland give us a strong foundation upon which to build. We look forward to working with them as well as local residents and leaders to cultivate sustainable growth in these three neighborhoods.”
The Glenville, Clark-Fulton and Buckeye/Kinsman neighborhoods were chosen by the applicants for the Chase grant application based on a study by Cleveland State University that identified areas in Cleveland with Opportunity Zone designations where focused planning could attract private investment to the benefit of existing residents and businesses.