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Ohio developer plans senior housing complex on site of motel near Midway

Brian McGeady and Michael Riechman, MVAH Partners Managing Partners

Affordable housing developer MVAH Partners plans to build a 62-unit senior housing complex on the site of a motel near Midway Airport.

The four-story building at 4835 South Cicero Avenue would have about 58,000 square feet of total floor area, according to city building permit records.

The City Council voted in July to rezone the property so the development, called Cicero Senior Lofts, could move forward. The new zoning allows for 40 parking spaces and the preservation of an existing billboard, according to city records.

The existing Mainway Midway Motel, owned by William and Robert Sircher, was still operating as of Friday.

This week, the council voted to back the $20.3 million proposal with a $2.3 million loan and $1.7 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credits, according to an announcement from Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Forty-eight units will be targeted to tenants earning up to 60 percent of area median income, another eight will be held for those earning 30 percent, and the remaining eight units will be rented at market rate.

The building will include a mix of studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments.

Cincinnati-based MVAH operates 34 senior facilities across eight states, including two in Downstate Illinois, according to its website. The company also owns dozens of multifamily and single-family rentals all over the country, adding up to 6,200 total units. It plans to double its portfolio by 2023.

Chicago-area developers have been increasingly turning to senior housing as a way to capitalize on the city’s aging population. Just this week, investment firm Waterton announced it bought a majority take of senior housing operator Pathway to Living in advance of a national expansion push.

Other senior facilities are either planned or under construction in Lakeview, Portage Park and Norwood Park.

The City Council this month passed an ordinance tightening tenant protection rules for senior housing developers who renovate their buildings.

Representatives of MVAH Partners and the Mainway Midway Motel did not immediately respond to requests for comment Friday.

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