The Residences at Equality Park is the first of its kind in Florida — an affordable housing project with supportive services for LGBT seniors.
The 48-unit development is slated for completion in 2020. The project has broken ground and construction is underway.
Carrfour Supportive Housing, Florida’s largest nonprofit affordable housing developer is teaming up with The Pride Center at Equality Park for the new development. The Residences at Equality Park are located at 2040 North Dixie Highwayadjacent to the Pride Center.
The Residences at Equality Park will provide permanent affordable housing and on-site supportive services for low-income senior adults living with disabling conditions – such as physical illnesses or disabilities due to complications from diseases including HIV/AIDS – with a special focus on members of the LGBT community.
The units range in size from studios to two-bedroom apartments – 34 of which will be set aside as permanent supportive housing for low-income seniors ages 55 and older with a disabling condition who need on-site supportive services in order to maintain their housing. Forty-three units will be available to residents earning 60% or less of Broward County’s Area Median Income (AMI) – which would equate to a maximum annual income of about $35,400 per year for a one-person household, and about $40,400 per year for a two-person household.
The remaining five units will be available to those earning 33% or less of the AMI – which would equate to a maximum annual income of about $17,700 per year for a one-person household, and about $20,200 per year for a two-person household.
Monthly rents will be based on income, ranging from approximately $350 to $1,029. Construction is expected to be complete in 2020.
“There’s not a week that goes by when I don’t receive multiple phone calls from community members wanting to know when they can get on a wait list,” said Robert Boo, CEO of The Pride Center, in a press release. “The Pride Center started this journey seven years ago. The Residences at Equality Park is the culmination of a multi-year process of community assessment and strategic planning in which we’re responding to direct, community-requested, prioritized need. We have the opportunity to help meet this great need. Our work will decrease isolation, promote aging in place and increase the overall quality of life for LGBTQ+ older adults in South Florida. We have many reasons to celebrate.”
Nearly half of LGBT seniors in the U.S. live with a disabling condition, according to the Institute for Multigenerational Health. This is the reality The Pride Center faces every Tuesday morning when 200 seniors gather in their main hall for coffee and conversation. According to both SAGE USA and The Equal Rights Center, older LGBT adults in particular face a variety of unique challenges in securing housing with higher rates of discrimination and bias and sometimes even hostile treatment from landlords as well as fellow tenants.
Last year, more than 35,000 adult and youth attended activities at The Pride Center. The Center hosts more than 65 groups that meet regularly each month. Support, social and educational groups, programs and events focus on HIV, seniors, people with transgender experience, communities of color, recovery, women, young adults, men, health, the arts, athletics, spirituality, games and more. Outreach activities over the past year directly impacted over 250,000 residents and visitors to South Florida. Between one and two thousand people utilize the Equality Park campus daily.