Cambridge Announces Preservation of 504 Affordable Units at Fresh Pond Apartments

Fresh Pond Apartments from the ground floor
The City of Cambridge and Rindge Associates Limited Partnership have come to an agreement to preserve 504 housing units as affordable at Fresh Pond Apartments. The agreement will preserve 166 former Below Market Interest Rate units as affordable for at least 50 years through City funding, and commits the owner to renew its contract with the Department of Housing and Urban Development to maintain 338 apartments as project-based Section 8 units for the term of the agreement.

In 2018, the Mayor and City Council unanimously passed a policy order requesting that the City Manager work with the Community Development Department to “ensure that the City is on track to successfully preserve the affordability of the Fresh Pond Apartments and meet the needs of the community.” In March, 2020, the City Manager requested an appropriation of $15 million to assist in preserving the affordability of units at Fresh Pond Apartments, which the City Council approved unanimously. Since then, the City Manager, Mayor Siddiqui, and the Community Development Department have worked to ensure all parties could come to an agreement and that the necessary funding would be secured.

Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui said she was particularly proud of the work to maintain the affordability of the Fresh Pond Apartments (formerly known as Rindge Towers) because it is where she grew up and where her family had a stable foundation for opportunity and growth. “I am so pleased this deal has been finalized and that these units will remain affordable for the next 50 years,” said Mayor Siddiqui. “Having lived in the Fresh Pond Apartments, I know how essential each one of the 504 units are to the community. Approving the appropriation to keep these units affordable was the most important vote I’ve taken, and I am so glad to have worked with Rindge Associates, the City Manager, and City staff to move this process forward.”

The City Manager noted that this funding shows the City’s dedication to preserving affordable housing in Cambridge. “The $32.5 million loan from the Cambridge Affordable Housing Trust demonstrates the City’s ongoing commitment to affordable housing efforts,” said Cambridge City Manager Louis A. DePasquale. “I want to thank our City staff, the Mayor, the City Council, the Affordable Housing Trust, and the Cambridge Housing Authority. Their close collaboration with the residents of Fresh Pond Apartments and its owner, Rindge Associates, has ensured these apartments will remain affordable for another generation of families.”

Richard J. Henken, president and CEO of Schochet Companies said, “I am so proud of the extraordinary efforts of the Schochet staff and the Cambridge Community Development department to secure the long-term preservation of this critical housing resource for several generations into the future...As the owner and/or property manager of nearly 5,000 affordable housing units throughout New England, we have seen repeatedly how the availability of affordable housing stabilizes families; benefits the local economy and creates a base for educational opportunity, similar to the Mayor’s personal experience.”

Fresh Pond Apartments comprises two 22 story buildings and offers one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments which provide affordable housing to low-income individuals and families. The two high-rise buildings were originally built under HUD subsidies in the 1960s and acquired by Rindge Associates in the early 1970s. Today, the apartments are home to a vibrant community of thousands of Cambridge residents. These units will remain affordable for the next 50 years.

Please direct any questions to the Mayor’s Chief of Staff, Michael Scarlett at mscarlett@cambridgema.gov.
Page was posted on 10/13/2021 12:29 PM
Page was last modified on 10/13/2021 12:30 PM
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