In June, IFF closed loans totaling approximately $16.1 million for nine community-driven projects in the Midwest, while also closing funding to a New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) project that provided a Chicago nonprofit with a $6.575 million NMTC allocation. We’ve included information below about several of the loans and what the organizations that received them are doing with the capital. To learn more about IFF’s lending, visit our Capital Solutions page.
Academy of Music Production Education and Development
IFF closed a $2.3 million loan for the Academy of Music Production Education and Development (AMPED) that enabled the nonprofit to purchase a 30,036-square-foot building in Louisville, KY, and complete renovations to the facility. AMPED provides technology workforce training, intensive support to entrepreneurs, and arts education to young people – all of which are designed to foster economic independence among people of color who have faced inequitable barriers to generational wealth building.
The renovation to the facility includes building out and furnishing an artist workspace, artist gallery, and event and office spaces, among other upgrades that will bolster AMPED’s mission. AMPED will also lease space to the University of Louisville and Jefferson County Public Schools, providing the organization with an important source of revenue to support its operations. The facility is expected to help AMPED establish a national model for the creation of spaces that foster economic growth, mobility, and independence. AMPED is conducting a capital campaign to fund the $6 million project, which is being split into two phases that are expected to be fully completed by the end of 2023.
IFF closed funding to a New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) project that provided BUILD with a $6.575 million NMTC allocation to facilitate the construction of a headquarters campus in the Austin neighborhood on Chicago’s West Side. Expected to open this fall, the campus will include two facilities totaling 51,000 square feet that will enable BUILD to increase the size of its staff by 30 percent, expand its programming, and extend its operating hours to meet the needs of thousands of young people each year. Additional NMTC allocations for the project are being provided by the Chicago Development Fund, LISC, and JPMorgan Chase (which is also expected to serve as the equity investor). The project will create approximately 70 FTE jobs and is an essential component of a community quality of life plan designed to revitalize the Austin neighborhood.
Founded in 1969, BUILD has worked for more than 50 years to help young people on the West Side of Chicago overcome systemic obstacles to thriving futures through mentoring and other structured programming. IFF previously closed a $5.65 million bridge loan for BUILD that enabled the nonprofit to move forward with construction while awaiting capital campaign contributions. Learn more about BUILD and the project in our recent story, “Nonprofit BUILD Moves Quickly to Disrupt the Status Quo with a Bold Investment in Community Infrastructure on Chicago’s West Side.”
Delmar DivINe Charitable Foundation
IFF closed a $1.5 million loan for the Delmar DivINe Charitable Foundation (DDCF) that will bridge the next phase of a capital campaign designed to further the development of the nonprofit social innovation campus in St. Louis, MO. The capital will be used to complete the buildout of office space for human service providers, part of a $100 million redevelopment of a formerly shuttered hospital. With more than 100,000 square feet of space, Delmar DivINe will include approximately 150 apartments designed to appeal to diverse professionals invested in the region’s social transformation and office space for more than 30 nonprofit tenants – including IFF – to create a mixed-use innovation hub where co-located professionals will be able to collaborate to solve community challenges.
The facility is located along Delmar Boulevard, long seen as the dividing line between socio-economically challenged Black communities in North St. Louis and more prosperous neighborhoods in St. Louis’ Central Corridor. The capital infusion from IFF’s loan will enable the facility to fully open this fall. At full capacity, organizations located at Delmar DivINe are expected to serve more than 250,000 people annually in the St. Louis region. Learn more about the project here.
IFF closed a $5 million loan for INDUSTRY Detroit – a Qualified Opportunity Zone Business – that will finance the rehabilitation of a former school building that will serve as a mixed-use commercial office hub to house both mission-driven organizations and for-profit businesses in Midtown Detroit. Vacant since 2016, the facility will be expanded to approximately 116,000 square feet, with roughly 20,000 square feet set aside for businesses and nonprofits owned or led by people of color and women that will lease space at below the market rate.
Renovations planned include the addition of a mezzanine, the installation of energy efficient features, and the buildout of open workspace that can be easily reconfigured with a flexible wall system to accommodate a wide range of business needs. Each floor will have a large, community break room with kitchen facilities, as well as shared conference and meeting rooms fully integrated for A/V needs. An existing parking lot will be repaved to accommodate future commuters, while an adjacent side street will be activated as a plaza where food trucks can operate and tenants and neighborhood residents can gather outdoors.
Located in a fast-growing part of the city, the project is part of a broader plan for redevelopment that centers around innovation, collaboration, and creative use projects and businesses. IFF is one of four CDFIs providing capital for the $36.5 million project, along with Capital Impact Partners, LISC Detroit, and CRF USA. Additional funding for the project is being provided by an array of public and private sources, including Invest Detroit, Ralph C. Wilson Foundation, and New Economy Initiative, among others.
Lillian Marcie Center
IFF closed a loan of approximately $2.5 million for the nonprofit holding company of the Lillian Marcie Center, founded by actor Harry Lennix, with a mission to restore and secure the artistic legacy of Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood. The loan will refinance $1.2 million in debt currently held by the nonprofit, while also providing $1.3 million of flexible capital to fund predevelopment costs associated with the redevelopment of the 110-year-old property, originally constructed as a Marshall Field’s warehouse, into an approximately 22,000 square foot performing arts center, envisioned to become the capital of Black American performance art.
The $26 million redevelopment will create two stages for theater groups to perform, one of which will accommodate approximately 350 people and a second, more intimate studio theater that will seat approximately 70-80 patrons. The African-American Museum of Performing Arts will be an anchor tenant in the facility, providing artistic residencies as a community partner and sponsoring theatrical and performing arts productions. Two additional theater companies, Congo Square Theater and NAJWA DANCE CORP, are also planning to stage performances in the facility. The Lillian Marcie Center will recruit local residents to staff the facility and also has an agreement in place with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) to establish an incubator for the performing arts at the Center. CPS students will participate in a five-week course, and the Center will provide CPS with a curriculum integrated with the theater for students.
The project is expected to create more than 10 full-time jobs, while also establishing a new cultural resource on Chicago’s South Side. To date, the project has secured funding and financing from a diverse group of public and private sources, including TIF funding from the City of Chicago.
IFF closed a $63,000 loan for Raquan’s Haven that will enable the Chicago-based nonprofit to purchase a 1,000-square-foot single-family home in Mundelein, IL, and to complete cosmetic upgrades. Raquan’s Haven is purchasing the home from the Lake County Housing Authority and will preserve the affordability of the home for future renters. Raquan’s Haven offers transitional housing and mentorship services to young women and their children who are experiencing homelessness. A Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) is providing the nonprofit with $115,000 in capital that will cover remaining costs associated with the project.
St. Louis Art Place Initiative
IFF closed a predevelopment loan of nearly $122,500 for St. Louis Art Place Initiative (API) that will enable the nonprofit to move forward with plans for the development of seven affordable homes in the Gravois Park neighborhood of St. Louis, MO. Once completed, the homes will be sold to low-to-moderate-income artists, encouraging those who work in the community to live there too. API was founded in 2019 by the Incarnate Word Foundation, Kranzberg Arts Foundation, and the Regional Arts Commission – with a mission to foster wealth- and equity-building for artists through homeownership. Three of the homes will preserve existing properties and four homes will be new construction, ranging in size from 1,440 square feet to 1,724 square feet. The average mortgage will be between $600 and $750 per month. API will provide $15,000 in down payment assistance to each homebuyer. Additional phases will follow the development of the first seven homes (a total of 21 homes) as part of a coordinated effort to increase homeownership, reduce neighborhood blight, and strengthen market values in the area. Gateway, a fellow CDFI, is providing construction financing for the project, while funds from St. Louis City and Affordable Housing Trust Fund are expected to further support the project.
Western Reserve Community Fund
IFF closed a $2 million loan for Western Reserve Community Fund (WRCF) that will provide the Akron, Ohio-based CDFI with capital to support community development in Northeast Ohio’s Summit County. Intended uses for the capital include lines of credit for minority contractors, a small business loan fund that will support BIPOC- and women-owned businesses, an affordable housing trust fund, and a bridge lending fund that will provide capital outlays for reimbursable projects through Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) and other sources. WRCF was established in 2019 as an independent entity by the Development Finance Authority of Summit County, whose staff also manages the CDFI. WRCF fills identified lending gaps in its target market, offers non-traditional financial products, attracts outside investment to the region, and provides development services to borrowers. Learn more by reading our recent story, “$2 Million IFF Loan Provides New CDFI in Akron with Flexible Capital to Accelerate Impact.”