The 630 | A New Lease

April 2018 View more

Sixty-three-year old Angela Avery received a Christmas-in-April surprise this month when her new landlord spent $4 million renovating the apartment complex she lives in. She and her Ogden Manor neighbors are reaping the benefits of the development’s purchase by a private company, Vitus Group, in November 2017.

“It’s a win for the residents of the property,” says Kenny Coles, DuPage Housing Authority’s executive director. The deal with Vitus also allows the county to recoup some of the money it loaned the housing authority for the complex, and ensures the units will remain affordable for the next 35 years.

Although Avery put in multiple applications for her own apartment in 2017 (she had previously lived with her daughter), she ultimately chose Ogden Manor because of its convenient location. “It was the area and access to stores, since I don’t have a car,” she says. “It’s much nicer than some of the senior buildings that I applied for. This was my favorite. The placement of it is excellent. The high school is on the corner, and the bank is across the street. There is a Jewel a couple of blocks away and I can get there easily.”

Ogden Manor’s 108 units are located in one three-story, age-restricted (62+) apartment building, where Avery lives, and five two-story townhome buildings for families. According to government statistics, 86 percent of Illinois households using federal assistance include children or people who are elderly or disabled.

Built in 1979, Ogden Manor is one of only a few subsidized housing complexes in Naperville. The federal government’s Housing and Urban Development Division (HUD) subsidizes payments; HUD residents usually pay 30 percent of their gross income for rent. Vitus specializes in redeveloping this type of low-income housing.

“We’ve seen that access to quality, affordable housing has a profound impact on the lives of our residents and the power to revitalize the communities they live in,” says Scott Langan, development director for Vitus. “We hope to deepen the sense of pride residents have in their community and build on Ogden Manor’s excellent location, within walking distance of multiple parks, trails, shopping, dining and transit as well as schools and religious centers.”

Avery looks forward to upgrades being installed in her apartment, including new cabinetry, flooring and countertops. “I’m watching the improvements occur as we speak,” she says. “One of my neighbors said she had hers replaced and she really liked them. Now it’s my turn.”