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Barnes Fund for Affordable Housing Innovation Round Open


Non-profit developers and organizations are encouraged to submit innovative proposals to build or maintain affordable housing options

Mayor Megan Barry is calling on non-profits to submit innovative proposals that will leverage $5 million in funds available through the Barnes Fund for Affordable Housing. This new round of funding follows a successful fall application period, which saw non-profit developers submit proposals that leveraged $10 million in funds. The innovation round will utilize funds made available through the sale of the old Nashville Convention Center.

“As housing prices continue to rise throughout the city, many hardworking Nashvillians are struggling to find a place to call home. The Barnes Fund is a critical tool in our efforts to expand the supply of affordable housing throughout Nashville,” said Mayor Megan Barry, who has committed to allocate $10 million to the Barnes Fund in each of her recommended operating budgets. “This innovative funding round will allow non-profit organizations to think outside the box on how they can work with public, private, and non-profit organizations to build, preserve, and maintain affordable housing in Davidson County.”

The goal of this innovation round is to identify ways to creatively prevent displacement, with plans that respect the community’s needs and increase housing options for Nashvillians. Applications can be innovative in three areas:

  • Innovative partnerships that help lower the cost of development and/or help nonprofits undertake projects that will have maximum impact on our community, such as non-profit and for-profit developer partnerships, program-based partnerships, and public sector-partnerships.
  • Innovative tools to develop affordable housing, such as mixed-use housing, mixed-income housing, transit-oriented development, non-traditional land use to develop housing, non-traditional design of the housing units, employer-assisted housing, tiny homes, or Community Development Financial Institutions(CDFI). Community Land Trust (CLT) applications will not be accepted in the 2017 Spring Innovation Round. There will be a separate funding round for CLTs in FY 2017-18.
  • Innovative housing for target populations, which are developments tailored to target populations such as seniors, large families, creatives, individuals or families who make 0-30% of the Area Median Income, ex-offenders, youth transitioning out of foster care, hospitality/tourism employees, teachers, veterans, and persons with disabilities.

Grants can include funding for renovation or construction of affordable homeownership and rental opportunities and other supportive efforts to encourage affordability. Funds can be leveraged by nonprofit developers with other existing tax credit and funding programs.

“We’ve seen tremendous passion and energy in the non-profit community towards expanding affordable housing options in our city,” said Morgan Mansa, manager of the Barnes Fund. “We hope that by targeting funds towards innovative proposals, we will find new and creative ways to help Nashvillians find housing or stay in the homes they love.”

The deadline for applications to be submitted is June 6 at noon. The proposals will be scored by an independent review committee before being submitted to the Housing Trust Fund Commission and Metro Council for their approval.

About the Barnes Fund for Affordable Housing

The Barnes Fund was created in 2013 in an effort to expand the supply of affordable housing for residents in Nashville. The Fund makes competitive grants to nonprofit housing developers to increase affordable housing options for Nashvillians. In January of 2017, the Housing Trust Fund Commission and Metro Council approved applications to leverage $10 million in funds made available through Mayor Megan Barry’s FY16-17 recommended budget, resulting in the creation or preservation of 381 housing units.

Read more information about the Barnes Fund