It may seem like every beautiful apartment complex in Austin is financially out of reach. With rent continuing to soar, how do we keep some sense of balance in our city? Even though working toward affordable housing solutions in Austin may feel impossibly weighty, Foundation Communities has been tackling this issue with unwavering persistence.
What Is Foundation Communities?
According to its website, Foundation Communities has “provide[d] affordable, attractive homes and free on-site support services for thousands of families with kids, as well as veterans, seniors, and individuals with disabilities” since 1990. Today, this nonprofit ambitiously operates 19 complexes throughout Austin.
In order to better grasp how they’ve created appealing and viable housing options for single people and families with lower incomes, I spoke with Foundation Communities Communications Coordinator, Alyah Khan.
Living at Lakeline Station
The newest addition to Foundation Communities’ map is Lakeline Station, located in northwest Austin. Quality schools are nearby, and a bus and train station are within walking distance, making this spot convenient for families.
One- to three-bedroom floor plans are available with nine-foot ceilings, ceramic tile floors and access to a fantastic Community Learning Center.
In fact, each family-housing complex owned by Foundation Communities has a Learning Center. Khan calls it “the heart or hub of the community.” She explains, “It’s where our after-school and summer learning programs take place for over 1,000 students and where additional on-site services, including financial stability and health classes (like Zumba!) are held. Everything is free to residents and our neighboring community members.”
To top off the mixture of great location, design and a helpful community, Lakeline Station is also the most environmentally friendly of Foundation Communities’ properties, allowing residents to save on utility bills and take part in sustainable living that keeps Austin green.
Quick Look at Bluebonnet Studios
Fourteen residences run by Foundation Communities house families, while five are studios for single residents. Bluebonnet Studios, located on South Lamar, is an example of an ideal affordable housing location for singles. Its simple, white exterior with pops of color enhances the ever-changing look of Lamar, and it serves as a reminder that 78704 should be accessible to all those who appreciate Austin culture.
One hundred and seven efficiencies with on-site laundry facilities, a computer lab and a rooftop terrace make up this affordable complex meant for people with an annual income below $27,250.
Since the lack of affordable housing in Austin feels like an overwhelming problem, I asked Khan if she feels optimistic about our city’s future. “Yes,” she responded. “The city supports our work and we are already looking ahead to 2017. We look forward to serving even more families. By the end of 2017, we will have welcomed home another 1,000 people.”
Right now, Lakeline Station still has some availability. But like Bluebonnet Studios, it should fill up quickly. All residents must pass a background check, have positive rental history and meet income parameters. Those who are interested can find out more here.
Foundation Communities has many hard-working employees, but there are plenty of chances to volunteer to help them make progressive changes in our city. Volunteers can build welcome home baskets, assist English as a Second Language teachers or even work in one of the Community Tax Centers where 20,000 people gain assistance in filing their taxes for free every year. Foundation Communities provides volunteers with extensive training to meet resident needs.
@theAustinot wants to know:
Do you know of other affordable housing opportunities in Austin?