City staff will ask the Gaithersburg City Council on Monday to oppose a developer’s plans to move forward with seeking federal low-income housing tax credits and other funding for a 199-apartment building proposed for Olde Towne Avenue because the proposed project doesn’t fit in with the city’s broader vision for the Olde Towne Enterprise Zone.
The developer is seeking financing through the federal low-income housing tax credit program, multifamily housing revenue bond program and other Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development programs.
The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development has asked the city of Gaithersburg to weigh in on the proposed development because it is required to work closely with the jurisdictions where the project is based.
The Mayor and Council is expected to vote on a resolution opposing the financing during its regular meeting at City Hall at 7:30 p.m. Monday. Gaithersburg’s City Council meetings are televised and are broadcast live online. The agenda is posted on the city’s website.
The development—The Crossing at Olde Towne—would be located at 200 Olde Towne Ave., what was once known as the Y site and used to be city property.
According to a site plan filed with the city’s Planning Commission on Oct. 23, The Crossing at Olde Towne would be a five-story development with 105 low- or moderate-income apartments and 94 apartments without any income restrictions. There would also be a six-story parking garage, city records show.
Reasons cited in the draft resolution opposing the financing include:
- The developer’s bid for the property showed its use as an upscale, market-rate garden apartment building.
- The Gaithersburg Olde Towne District Master Plan adopted in 2005 specifically references development of the parcel that complements "the character of development already established by the recent construction of the class ‘A’ office, luxury apartments, and public parking structures” and referred to the parcel’s “high visibility” and that it would be an “exciting” residential address.
- The project is in the city’s Olde Towne Enterprise Zone, which a city ordinance exempts from affordable housing requirements due to the high concentration of affordable housing already there.
- The Frederick Avenue Corridor & Vicinity Development Capacity Study, which the city commissioned earlier this year, recommended more owner-occupied development and said the city was “saturated” with multi-family apartment rentals.