Proposed affordable rental senior housing development gets support from council

DMA Development Company LLC, a division of DMA Companies, is applying for funds to build an affordable senior housing in Hutto off of Exchange Boulevard between Liberty and Metcalfe streets.

City council approved a resolution of support Feb. 2 for the project, which President of DMA Companies Diana McIver said will aid in the development's effort to get housing tax credits allocated from the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs.

The proposed development, Cottonwood Square, would include a two-story complex with 24 units surrounded by one-story cottages with a total of 36 units.

Of the 60 units, five would be reserved for seniors age 55 and older who make 30 percent of the area median income, 45 units for those who make 50–60 percent of the median income and 10 units for seniors who exceed those income requirements.

McIver said preliminary plans call for a mix of one-bedroom, one-bath units that range from 700 to 800 square-feet as well as two-bedroom, two-bath units that are 835 to a little more than 1,000 square-feet in size.

Although Cottonwood Square would not be an assisted living facility and would not serve meals, McIver said the mix of cottages and the two-story complex with the community areas would enable seniors with varying levels of independence to live in the development.

"It allows us to really meet the needs of a community like Hutto all in one location," she said.

Founded in 1998, DMA Companies is based out of Austin and has nearly 850 senior housing units either in construction or under its management, McIver said.

Some of the other developments—those in Seguin, Abilene or Santa Fe, Texas—have amenities such as community rooms, movie theaters, fitness centers and libraries.

Cottonwood Square would be located on about six acres next to the Hutto Town Square neighborhood. McIver said DMA Companies plans to meet with the Hutto Town Square Home Owners Association, but preliminary discussions with the group have gone favorably.

No one from the public spoke at the Feb. 2 city council meeting, and city council members approved the resolution of support unanimously, giving DMA Development Company permission to proceed with the application process for the housing tax credits.

McIver said the company filed a preliminary application with the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs in early January, and plan to file the official application March 1.

If the Cottonwood Square development is awarded tax credits in July, construction could begin in about a year, and then the project would be finished in early 2014, McIver said.



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