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Gulf Coast Housing Partnership, DePaul Community Health Centers, and Alembic Community Development Join with City and State Elected Officials and Development Partners to Celebrate Grand Opening of H3C, an $80 Million Affordable Health + Housing Community in Central City, New Orleans

Development Includes 192 Residential Units and Community Health Clinic

New Orleans- Gulf Coast Housing Partnership (GCHP), DePaul Community Health Centers (DCHC), and Alembic Community Development (Alembic) joined with city and state officials, representatives from Aetna, a CVS Health company, and development partners at a ribbon-cutting celebration today for H3C, a new construction affordable housing and health care development located in Central City New Orleans.

H3C derives its name from the addition of health to the ongoing revitalization of Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard’s longstanding principles of culture, commerce, and community.  

The 210,000 square-foot development has 192 one-, two- and three-bedroom rental homes constructed to national green building standards. Ninety-two of those apartments are reserved for seniors 55 years of age or older with elements of design that facilitate aging in place. 

Co-located in the building fronting Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard is a new community health clinic managed by DCHC, one of Louisiana’s largest community health center networks. The DCHC Central City Clinic will provide adult and pediatric medical and behavioral health care services, an on-site pharmacy, and Medicaid enrollment assistance.

“Our organization prides itself on being easily accessible to the community. Many of our patients are challenged by social determinants of health, which include issues that supersede their access to health care like a lack of transportation, employment, housing and food insecurities,” said Dr. Michael Griffin, president and CEO of DePaul Community Health Centers. “H3C gives us yet another opportunity to conveniently treat and reach out to patients on a consistent basis to provide them with high-quality, compassionate care, regardless of their ability to pay.”

H3C is a GCHP Health + Housing pilot development. Health + Housing recognizes the significant role of affordable housing and access to health care on an individual’s health outcomes. It utilizes investments provided by healthcare payors, including Medicaid Managed Care Organizations (MCOs), to fund projects like H3C.  

“Through our partnerships with healthcare providers, we have seen first-hand the impact that housing, whether positive or negative, has on someone’s health outcomes,” said GCHP President and CEO Kathy Laborde. “We hope that if we can quantify through our Health + Housing pilots, like H3C, that better housing leads to better health outcomes, healthcare payors will be more inclined to invest in affordable housing.”

Aetna, a CVS Health company, has dedicated more than $26 million in concessionary investments for the development through R4 Capital to help build affordable housing for families and seniors in New Orleans. A long-time investor in affordable housing through public-private partnerships, the company has supported the development of more than 500 affordable and supportive housing units and invested more than $32 million statewide within the past three years.

“Having safe, affordable housing helps improve health outcomes and allows people to address their own mental and physical wellbeing, including managing chronic illnesses or even focus on securing education or steady employment,” said Jess Hall, CEO Aetna Better Health of Louisiana, a CVS Health company. “We’re committed to supporting New Orleans’ residents and families by addressing the social and environmental conditions that impact quality of life and increasing access to reliable resources that improve overall wellbeing.”

The Belle Reve Senior Building at H3C, named for Belle Reve, a longstanding New Orleans non-profit organization, will house the 92 apartment homes dedicated to those 55 or older and the Belle Reve Center.  

The Belle Reve Center will provide case management for senior residents, including information referrals, benefit and entitlement assistance, mental health support groups, and recreational and social activities led by peers focusing on the senior LGBTQ+ community. 

“By connecting senior residents to resources, services, and programs on-site and throughout the community, our goal is to promote relationship building, meaningful human connections, in what will be an intergenerational, LGBTQ-affirming, affordable housing community,” said William Bedwell, Executive Director of Belle Reve New Orleans. “We plan to engage various community partners to assist with benefit and entitlement opportunities, supplemental nutrition programs, informational referrals, and access to psychosocial support groups, among other services.”

 Funding support for H3C is provided by Advantage Capital, AMCREF Community Capital, Belle Reve, Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas, Finance New Orleans, Greater New Orleans Foundation, Home Bank, Housing Authority of New Orleans, Louisiana Housing Corporation, Louisiana Office of Community Development, New Orleans Office of Community Development, R4 Capital Funding, Regional Community Finance, and US Bank. 

“The closure of the Brown’s Dairy facility created an important opportunity to bring much-needed affordable housing and healthcare services to Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, a place of deep culture and history along with great access to jobs and public transit,” said Jonathan Leit, Director at Alembic. “We are very appreciative of all our local and state public partners and private sector funders for their support and investments, which will serve the Central City community for decades to come.”

Since 2007, GCHP and its partners have invested $195 million in affordable housing and complementary community and commercial space on Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard. 

“As a proud resident of Central City, it’s exciting to see H3C focus on three foundational pillars that define the neighborhood’s history and growth: culture, commerce, and community,” said Councilmember Lesli Harris, District B. “Home to the New Orleans civil rights movement, legendary brass bands, and Mardi Gras Indian tribes, Central City became a refuge of opportunities for rural families after the Civil War. H3C continues this legacy with its affordable housing, ensuring lifelong Central City residents can remain home. Residents also benefit from accessible healthcare at their doorsteps, with the Ascension DePaul Central City Health Clinic on the building’s first floor. Projects like H3C help keep the culture bearers of New Orleans home, where they belong.”

Impetus Construction and CCWIV Architecture LLC. served as the contractor and architect for the development of the residential space. Page Architects and Donahue Favret General Contractors served as the architect and general contractor for the DCHC Central City Clinic.

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