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HUD   >   State Information   >   Florida   >   Stories   >   2014-01-14
Aqua, Senior Modern Living with a River View

Affordable housing in Tampa

The residents from Aqua are ecstatic to call this Tampa building home. With a beautiful view of Hillsborough River the location is great, and, since mid-December, they also are very proud of the new energy saving appliances, the new painting and the entire renovation. Formerly called CTA River Apartments, it was built in 1971, and its 40+ years of age were definitively showing.

A new owner acquired the property in 2012, committed to several more decades of affordable housing for seniors and the renovation began. For the past 13 months the radical transformation took place while the residents still lived on the property. Now that the job is finally done, the mood is very festive and celebratory among the tenants of the 197 units.

Daisy Rocora, who has lived in the building for 14 years, enjoys living at Aqua because her affordable home "is like living at a 5 star hotel." With the renovation also arrived new amenities and Irene Estevez, resident at Aqua for 9 years is looking forward to "using the new gym, computer lab, library, community room and the social events."

The renovation of Aqua involved over 400 construction workers providing a positive impact to the economy of Tampa. It also took a public private partnership developed by Sage Partners. Construction financing was provided by Bank of America and First Housing Development Corporation. Aqua received an allocation of Housing Credits from Florida Housing Finance Corporation. The Housing Credits were purchased by Bank of America. HUD's component is the rental assistance contract that safeguards affordable housing for these Tampa seniors of low income for the next 20 years.