Community Investment Strategies Inc. recently hosted public officials and residents to mark the opening of Heritage Village at Oakhurst. — Courtesy: Community Investment Strategies Inc.
By Joshua Burd
Community Investment Strategies Inc. has taken the wraps off its latest project, a 93-unit, affordably priced rental building geared toward senior citizens in Monmouth County.
The development firm welcomed local officials and residents recently to mark the grand opening of the community, known as Heritage Village at Oakhurst. Located on West Park Avenue in Ocean Township, the four-story, 100,000-square-foot building replaces affordable senior homes in the area that were destroyed by flooding.
The project also comes with a new partnership that will add to its aging-in-place services.
“CIS is pleased to add Heritage at Oakhurst to our growing family of senior communities in Ocean Township and Monmouth County,” said Christiana Foglio, CEO of Lawrenceville-based CIS. “We are also excited to announce our strategic partnership with RWJBarnabas- Monmouth Medical under Care Strategies, which will offer community health services right here in Oakhurst and at our sister properties in Monmouth County, including Heritage Village at Ocean.”
The mix of one- and two-bedroom apartments serve seniors age 55 and older whose income is at or below 60 percent of the area median income, which is $39,480 for a one-person household, CIS said in a news release. According to state officials, the $23.2 million project was financed with the help of $11 million in federal funds related to the Hurricane Sandy recovery program, along with $11.4 million in financing and other sources through the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency.
“This worthwhile development is not only providing affordable housing opportunities for senior citizens in Monmouth County, but it is also helping replenish the stock of affordable rental housing lost to Sandy,” said Anthony L. Marchetta, the HMFA’s executive director. “HMFA hopes to receive federal approval later this year to provide a fourth round of FRM funding, which has been critical to creating affordable housing in counties and communities hardest hit by the storm.”
The new construction incorporates resiliency design elements to prevent and address potential weather and disaster-related events, the news release said. Apartments include central heating and air conditioning, energy efficient appliances and other modern features, while the pet-friendly building has amenities such as a community room, outdoor patio and library.
At the recent ribbon-cutting ceremony, Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling said having affordable options such as Heritage Village means staying close to loved ones and being able to enjoy your golden years.” Other officials echoed those sentiments, while praising the developer’s efforts.
“The persistence of Christiana Foglio has paid off in spades,” Ocean Township Mayor Christopher Siciliano said. “By bringing this project to the Township of Ocean, not only has she provided an affordable option for many of our local residents, she has provided something that has no price tag — the social benefit to many seniors once living alone, now has them thriving in an atmosphere, which is essential to all humans.
“On behalf of our seniors and the Township of Ocean, I wish to thank Christiana and the CIS team for their diligence in bringing Heritage Village to our community.”