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New apartment complex officially opens Downtown

CASITAS AFTER 03-24-14ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The $16.3 million Casitas de Colores apartment complex formally opened Monday with a ceremony attended by government officials and others, adding 71 rental units to the growing mix of housing Downtown.

Promoted as a “family-focused community,” Casitas de Colores was developed through a partnership between Romero Rose, an Albuquerque-based real-estate development and management company, and the nonprofit YES Housing Inc.

“Casitas de Colores is a great public/private partnership,” said Mayor Richard Berry in an email to the Journal. “It is a great addition to our efforts to continue to bolster a burgeoning downtown neighborhood with tremendous access to transportation, employers and Albuquerque’s growing innovation district.”

Berry was unable to attend Monday’s ceremony.

Consisting of three, three-story buildings, the project’s family focus stems from the larger-sized apartments — 32 two-bedroom and 20-three bedroom units — in a mix that includes four studio and 15 one-bedroom units. The 1.2-acre site is bounded by 2nd and 3rd streets and Lead and Silver avenues.

Casitas de Colores was built using low-income housing tax credits awarded to the partnership in 2012. A federal incentive to promote development of affordable or income-restricted housing, the tax-credit program is administered by the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority.

Of the 71 units, 49 are income restricted based on HUD guidelines and 22 are market rate, meaning they are open to any qualified renter.

The project is designed to meet platinum certification through the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program. Some of its green components include underground rainwater retention tanks, reflective white roofs and common-area lighting powered by solar panels.
Casitas de Colores was designed by the Dekker Perich Sabatini architectural firm, while the general contractor was Bradbury Stamm Construction.

As the Southwest regional office of the Jonathan Rose Cos. of New York City, Romero Rose developed the 121-unit Silver Gardens Apartments at 1st and Silver SW, also built with tax credits, and the for-sale, open-market Elements Townhomes nearby.

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