Casitas de Colores, an affordable housing complex in downtown Albuquerque, is one of seven finalists in the ULI Jack Kemp Excellence in Affordable & Workforce Housing Awards. The project is being recognized for bringing much needed affordable housing to the downtown area and providing economic and social benefits for its residents. Casitas de Colores and all award finalists will be celebrated at the ULI Housing Opportunity Conference in New Orleans on September 10-12, and the winner will be announced.
Casitas de Colores was completed in 2014. Like many projects developed after the Great Recession of the late 2000s, Casitas de Colores was built on a site originally slated for high-end, low-density, for-sale housing units. Given the change in economics, co-developers Romero Rose, LLS and YES Housing, Inc. decided the best use of the property was to change course and fill a much needed hole in the fabric of downtown: affordable housing specifically designed for families.
The property's existing infrastructure was repurposed and the site completely redesigned to inspire an active, urban lifestyle in the heart of downtown Albuquerque. Because of its location, residents are close to the city's multi-modal transportation center and trail system, and they can easily walk to a number of live/work/play locations.
In addition to providing 71 apartment homes, 70 percent of which are designated affordable units, Casitas de Colores has supported downtown revitalization by bringing families back into the city's core. The diverse, active community has had a significant impact, helping push forward the City of Albuquerque's Downtown 2025 Sector Development Plan, which prioritizes pedestrians, a "park once" concept, and community activity.
As a ULI Jack Kemp Award Finalist, Casitas de Colores is helping raise awareness of the critical role affordable housing plays in helping shape successful communities. The ULI award program was established in 2008 and is named in memory of Jack Kemp, former secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Read ULI's press release for more information about the award.
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Developers: Romero Rose, LCC and YES Housing, Inc.
Contractor: Bradbury Stamm Construction
Partners: City of Albuquerque, State of New Mexico, New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority, Bank of America
USGBC LEED: Triple LEED Platinum (Housing Buildings), and LEED Gold (Community Building)
For more information about Casitas de Colores, see What We Create.