Landmark Court Ruling Upholds OLCDC's Acquisition of Aswan Village Apartments
OPA-LOCKA, Fla.— The Opa-locka Community Development Corporation (OLCDC), which officially assumed ownership of Aswan Village Apartments in August, has now received a favorable appellate ruling marking a significant victory for nonprofit affordable housing developers involved in similar Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) deals across the country. The landmark ruling means that equity from the 216-unit rental community remains in the North Miami community for decades to come, instead of being extracted by out-of-state investors.
The landmark appellate ruling, which was issued by Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal, upholds without further opinion a July 2020 ruling by the Circuit Court of the 11th Judicial Circuit in Miami-Dade County that recognized OLCDC’s right of first refusal to purchase the property under Section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code, which establishes the LIHTC program. The nonprofit has been at odds with HallKeen Management over ownership rights since 2019 when the private investor attempted to sell the property to another real estate management company without recognizing OLCDC’s right to buy it. Now OLCDC is moving forward to deliver on its new obligations as full owner of the property.
“OLCDC is committed to providing residents with services, assistance and opportunities that help them escape generational poverty in Opa-locka and North Miami-Dade, and securing Aswan Village has been critical to that effort,” said President and CEO, Dr. Willie Logan. “We will always fight to do what’s right and to keep resources in the parts of the community where they can make the most impact.”
In its 40-year history, OLCDC has built and rehabilitated more than 200 affordable single-family homes and 2,500 affordable multi-family units in Miami-Dade County. With reports ranking Greater Miami as the seventh least affordable major metropolitan area in the world, the preservation of existing affordable developments such as Aswan Village is crucial.
“We are gratified by the outcome of the litigation and thankful for the thoughtful ad deliberative approach taken by the Judges. This isn’t just another affordable housing apartment complex to us, and we’re not just a landlord,” said OLCDC Board Chairman Nashid Sabir. “This is a community and part of the OLCDC family of residential properties. We want this to be a place where individuals and families are holistically cared for and empowered to have better lives.”
As a first step, OLCDC is working to connect residents to supportive services and programming, including care coordination, education programs, financial empowerment resources and arts and cultural activities.
About The Opa-locka Community Development Corporation
The Opa-locka Community Development Corporation (OLCDC) was established in 1980 as a nonprofit community development corporation in order to address the distressed unemployment conditions, particularly in the Opa-locka and North Dade County, Florida, communities. Its mission is to build a strong ecosystem that supports under-resourced communities in creating an equitable and sustainable economy. For more information about OLCDC, please visit www.olcdc.org.