The Minneapolis Public Housing Authority hosted a groundbreaking ceremony on January 12 to celebrate the agency’s Family Housing Expansion Project that will develop 84 units of deeply affordable housing. 

The 84 units will include two and three-bedroom options in fourplexes and sixplexes in 16 sites across the city.

One of the sites is in Southwest Minneapolis. In 2021, the City approved the land at 5139 Penn Ave. S to be rezoned, per an application by the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority, to construct "a new three-story multiple-family dwelling containing six dwelling units."

The Penn Avenue building construction will start later this year with the tentative completion date in October, according to Drew Halunen at the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority.

A map of the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority's Family Housing Expansion Project sites. Image courtesy of the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority.

Throughout the sites, 16 of the units will be designed for people who need fully accessible units and another 17 will be prioritized for people who are unsheltered.  

There are currently more than 7,500 families on the public housing waitlist. More than 80 percent of people on the waitlist are people of color. The Family Housing Expansion Project aims to address the significant unmet demand for deeply affordable housing.  

“For families from MPHA’s family waiting list, today is a life-changing moment,” said Abdi Warsame, Executive Director of the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority. “For 84 families, and the hundreds to follow them in the years to come, the promise of stable, deeply affordable housing becomes one step closer to reality.” Warsame was the Ward 6 councilmember before he resigned in 2020 to be the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority executive director. 

“Every resident in Minneapolis deserves safe, stable, and permanent housing – that is affordable to them,” said Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, who spoke at the agency’s groundbreaking ceremony on January 12. 

The Minneapolis Public Housing Authority maintains more than 700 deeply affordable family homes throughout Minneapolis.  

The Family Housing Expansion Project was made possible through financing across various partners including the US Bank Community Development Corporation, Citi Community Capital, the Metropolitan Council, the City of Minneapolis’ Affordable Housing Trust Fund, and Hennepin County’s Affordable Housing Development Accelerator fund.