On June 5, Austin city leaders and local developers gathered to celebrate the grand opening of Saison North, a 116-unit mixed-income, multifamily housing development in North Burnet.

The new community aims to expand Austin's affordable housing inventory by dedicating 82 of the units to households earning at or below 60% of the Median Family Income, or MFI, in the region.

This year, the MFI for a family of four in Travis County is $126,000. For the same size family, 60% MFI is $75,600.

Quote of note

“Saison North is the result of a creative and collaborative vision,” said Mandy DeMayo, interim director for Austin's Housing Department. "There are so many employers that are in proximity to this location and are going to be such an asset to the families who are living in these units."

The details

Situated on the former site of Austin’s North by Northwest Brewery, Saison North displays multiple homages to the former restaurant bar, including repurposed signage throughout the exterior.

The community includes 48 one-, 44 two-, and 24 three-bedroom, energy-efficient rental units, along with amenities like a fitness center, complimentary Wi-Fi and childcare services, according to a release.

The background

Several community partners collaborated on funding for the $39 million project, which was first announced in 2020:

Travis County Commissioner Brigid Shea said affordable housing projects like Saison North are not possible without funding efforts that provide tax exemption to developers.

"Tax exemption is an effective way to buy down the rent and create more deeply affordable housing," Shea said. "The county doesn't have the money laying around to fund these projects alone; it's [possible] through these partnerships that make the property 100% tax exempt."