Arrow-right Camera

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Friday, October 30, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Clear Night 35° Clear
News >  Spokane

Spokane City Council to consider land deal with Catholic Charities

Rob McCann, president & CEO of Catholic Charities, talks about the donation of $5 million from Jeff Bezos’ charity the Day One Families Fund at Catholic Charities in Spokane on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019. The Spokane City Council will consider a purchase and sale agreement with the charity on Monday for land near Gonzaga Prep, which is intended to be a site for affordable housing for low-income families. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Rob McCann, president & CEO of Catholic Charities, talks about the donation of $5 million from Jeff Bezos’ charity the Day One Families Fund at Catholic Charities in Spokane on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019. The Spokane City Council will consider a purchase and sale agreement with the charity on Monday for land near Gonzaga Prep, which is intended to be a site for affordable housing for low-income families. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

The first of two remaining hurdles to Catholic Charities’ latest housing project will be decided on Monday.

The Spokane City Council will vote on a proposed purchase and sale agreement with Catholic Charities of Eastern Washington, which wants to buy five parcels of city-owned land in northeast Spokane and convert them into a 72-unit apartment complex for homeless families.

If it wins council approval of the purchase, Catholic Charities’ final remaining major challenge will be securing federal tax credits to fund the project.

The project, dubbed Gonzaga Family Haven because of its partnership with adjacent Gonzaga Prep and nearby Gonzaga University, is far from Catholic Charities’ first housing development.

The City Council will vote Monday on a resolution that would declare the property as surplus and authorize the city to enter into the purchase and sale agreement with Gonzaga Family Haven, a company formed by Catholic Charities to tackle the project.

The agreement also would allow the buyer until June 20, 2020, to conduct a feasibility study on the property.

The cost is not specified in the agreement. Instead, the purchase price will be the average of two independent appraisals.

An estimate filed in briefing documents with the City Council pegs the properties’ value between $850,000 and $1 million.

Catholic Charities has built or manages more than 1,300 units of housing in and around Spokane.

It envisions Gonzaga Family Haven as a landing zone for graduates of its Rising Strong program, which seeks to serve families at risk of being separated due to substance abuse or other issues.

Gonzaga Prep and Gonzaga University have committed student and staff services to the project and its future residents.

The parcels included in the sale would be would be 2809, 2811, 2817 and 2821 N. Nevada St., and 920 E. Wolverton Court. The land forms a triangle on the northeast corner of the intersection of North Foothills Drive and Hamilton Street.

The land is owned by the city’s water department, which uses it for employee parking. One small structure on the property is used as an office for code enforcement employees.

The project was bolstered earlier this month when Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ charity, the Day One Families Fund, announced a $5 million gift to Catholic Charities. Although the funding alone will not support the development, Catholic Charities said it would allow for improvements that would have otherwise been left out of the plans.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.



New health insurance plans available Nov. 1 through Washington Healthplanfinder

 (Photo courtesy WAHBE)
Sponsored

Fall means the onset of the cold and flu season.