TSAHC Spotlight Series: The Chicon

March 8, 2019 | by Michael Wilt

Categories: Affordable Housing, Homeownership, Spotlight

This is the latest entry in our On the House spotlight series.

TSAHC periodically spotlights affordable housing developments across the state to help readers understand what they look like, how they are financed, and who lives there. This week we are focusing our spotlight on the The Chicon, a development financed in part by TSAHC’s Texas Housing Impact Fund.  


The Chicon, developed by the Chestnut Neighborhood Revitilization Corporation (CNRC), is a 28-unit mixed-use development in Austin, Texas. 

TSAHC provided $2 million in construction financing for the project through our Texas Housing Impact Fund thanks to an investment from Texas Capital Bank

The development costs totaled $11 million, with the remaining financing provided by Frost Bank. The City of Austin also provided equity through affordable housing general obligation bonds.

The Chicon is located in Central East Austin, an area that is rapidly becoming more expensive. According to research from NeighborhoodX, the average cost per square foot for homes in the lower end of the market increased 90.1% from 2017 to 2018.

The Chicon addresses the need for high quality, affordable homeownership opportunities in this neighborhood by providing 21 condominiums for households earning up to 80% of the area median family income (AMFI). 

The development also sits on a City-designated land trust. This allowed CNRC to sell homes at a reduced price, and it also allowed CNRC to restrict future resales of the affordable homes to households that are also earning up to 80% of AMFI. This means homes will remain affordable for future generations.

Another unique feature of The Chicon is that it includes commercial space on the ground floor. CNRC's Board of Directors interviewed prospective buyers of the commercial spaces to make sure the businesses, services and retail options they provided would benefit residents and the surrounding community.


Investing in The Chicon isn't the only way TSAHC helps provide affordable housing options in the changing landscape of Central East Austin. In 2015, TSAHC purchased the Rollins Apartment complex in that area and continues to make significant improvements to the complex which includes 15, three-bedroom units for households at 60% AMFI.

In 2018, TSAHC's Board of Directors approved the issuance of multifamily tax-exempt housing bonds for the rehabilitation and preservation of the Walnut Creek Apartments. That complex includes 98 units primarily for households at 60% AMFI. As part of the bond issuance agreement, the developer is setting aside 10 units to households at 30% AMFI.

Additionally in 2018, TSAHC's Board of Directors approved $995,000 in construction financing for the AHA! at Briarcliff development through the Texas Housing Impact Fund. This development -- also in Central East Austin -- broke ground last month and will provide 27 affordable and accessible homes to households at 30%, 50% and 60% AMFI.

On the House blog posts are meant to provide general information on various housing-related issues, research and programs. We are not liable for any errors or inaccuracies in the information provided by blog sources. Furthermore, this blog is not legal advice and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice from a licensed professional attorney.

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