Bank of America NA, which has pursued an aggressive growth strategy in the Boulder Valley and Northern Colorado over the past two-plus years, has pledged millions of dollars in financing for Fort Collins affordable-housing project.
The bank has committed $18.1 million in debt and $12.8 in equity financing for the development of Northfield Commons, Bank of America said in a news release.
Northfield Commons, which is set to include 84 units priced below-market for locals who earn less than 60% of the area median income (the AMI in the Fort Collins-Loveland metropolitan statistical area is about $75,000 for a single-person household), is being developed by Denver-based Mercy Housing.
Mercy was able to secure the land north of Old Town below market value, Kuhl Brown, who heads Mercy’s Mountain Plains division, told BizWest last year.
The affordable housing component of the larger Northfield project, which is being built by Windsor-based Landmark Homes and could total more than 400 units on 55 acres, is expected to include 24 one-bedroom, 42 two-bedroom, and 18 three-bedroom units. Construction is expected to wrap up in 2024.
“This project will greatly enhance the Fort Collins Community and bring a thriving workforce to the area, which is why we wanted to be involved,” BoA Denver market president Raju Patel said in the release. “These investments are aligned to the bank’s broader efforts to advance racial equality and economic opportunity through commitments focused on health, jobs and reskilling, affordable housing and small business needs.”
The Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank, the second-largest institution of its kind in the United States with more than $1.9 trillion in total deposits, entered the Colorado market in 2015 with its first Denver branch and now operates 33 branches in the Centennial State.
Bank of America’s Colorado expansion has been concentrated in the Denver area, but the bank also has expanded outward from Denver, looking south to Colorado Springs and north as far as Fort Collins. It opened a Boulder location at 1965 28th St. in 2016, and now has new or planned branches in Broomfield, Fort Collins, Greeley, Lafayette and Longmont.
“Colorado is an extremely important market for us,” Bank of America’s regional executive for expansion markets Felicia Lewis told BizWest in 2020. “We continue to have a commitment not only to Denver, where our core branch presence is, but we continue to expand beyond Denver. It remains a top-priority market for us.”
Its latest Northern Colorado footholds are in the Front Range Village shopping center in Fort Collins and in the NorthGate Village retail plaza in Greeley.
“In every market we go to, the reason we’re going is that we believe we have a strong client presence there.” Lewis said during her 2020 interview with BizWest. “We believe that clients want us to be there … Clients are asking, ‘When are you coming? When can we get more locations?’ So we’ve got a pretty strong client demand.”
BoA’s expansion in Northern Colorado and the Boulder Valley has coincided with increasing challenges related to housing affordability as prices across the region regularly feature double-digit year-over-year increases. Bank-branch employees are by no means immune from these challenges.
The median price for sold-homes in Fort Collins was $619,900 in May, according to data from Loveland-based Information and Real Estate Services LLC. That figure was $560,000 in the Loveland/Berthoud market and $450,000 in Greeley.
Bank of America “has one of the highest minimum wages in [the] Denver[-area market] among its industry competitors,” the bank claimed in a news release. “The bank is also investing in much needed affordable housing to support essential industries operating in Fort Collins, including education, technology and health care.”
This article was first published by BizWest, an independent news organization, and is published under a license agreement. © 2022 BizWest Media LLC
Leave a Comment