New affordable housing to house 120 low-income seniors 

PUNTA GORDA, Fla. (March 27, 2017) – At a time when it is in critical need, the Punta Gorda Housing Authority and Norstar Development are continuing the rebirth of affordable housing in the community following Hurricane Charley’s destruction of almost all its properties in 2004.

On Tuesday, April 11, Norstar Development and the PGHA will hold a ribbon cutting at 11:30 a.m. for The Verandas, an affordable senior rental housing development located at 24500 Airport Road. Special guests will include officials from partnering agencies including the City of Punta Gorda, Charlotte County, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Florida Housing Finance Corporation, Norstar Development USA, Bank of America, Banc of America Community Development Cooperation and the PGHA.

Situated at the corner of Airport Road and Cooper Street, The Verandas consists of two phases with 120 senior units of affordable housing. Both phases are 100 percent occupied and were leased within 60 days.

“We are very excited to see this next development come to fruition for our community,” said Loraine Helber, executive director of the PGHA. “After Charley, we decided to rebuild our affordable housing units throughout the community to blend seamlessly into the surrounding neighborhoods. This $25 million project will continue to help our aging population and seniors in need to age in place.”

The PGHA’s original units were built in 1970. They opened Gulf Breeze Apartments in 2008 and received national recognition in 2009, receiving the prestigious 2009 Charles L. Edison Tax Credit Excellence Award for Public Housing Revitalization.

The Verandas’s amenities include a dining room with full kitchen and screened outdoor lanai, resident library/reading room, executive boardroom, fitness center, billiards and a craft room.

Funding for the $25 million project was provided through $2.55 million in insurance proceeds, RHF funds, other housing authority funds and $75,000 in SHIP funds committed by Charlotte County. Florida Housing Finance Corporation also allocated nine percent low-income housing tax credits for PHA Revitalization of Affordable Housing Developments, and Bank of America provided a $14 million loan for construction.

The Verandas has received the Florida Green Home Certification, which creates socially sustainable affordable housing and integrates Universal Design principals. The buildings’ design is based on Spanish revival to further meld the project into the Punta Gorda community.

The Verandas was developed by Norstar Development USA and is managed by Norstar Accolade Property Management. The development team includes RDI Architects, Banks Engineering and Brooks & Freund.

Norstar is a recognized, award-winning leader in the real estate and construction industry with 50 years of experience. The company’s other regional affordable housing developments include Gulf Breeze Apartments in Punta Gorda, Renaissance Preserve Senior Residences and Homes in Fort Myers and Venetian Walk in Venice in addition to developments throughout the Southwest Florida coast.

Established in 1965, the Punta Gorda Housing Authority offers quality, affordable rental housing and rental subsidies to qualified low-income households within its jurisdiction, as well as resident support services and programs. A seven-member board of commissioners appointed by the Punta Gorda City Council governs the Housing Authority.

For more information, call 941-639-4344 or visit