By Cherri Gregg
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – One of the nation’s first LGBT-friendly senior housing projects reached a major construction milestone Wednesday.
Applause, hugs and smiles were plentiful as crews hoisted the construction panel signed by LGBT community leaders and politicians atop the six-story John C. Anderson Apartments building at 13th and Irving Streets.
“People who have need for this kind of housing, which doesn’t exist almost anywhere else in the country, will finally have a place,” says Mark Segal, president of dmhFund and Philadelphia Gay News. He says the $19 million, 56-unit affordable housing project is on track to be complete by December.
“I know too many LGBT pioneers who don’t have the money and who are almost homeless,” he says. “This is place for them to love with dignity in their own community.”
Segal says folks can begin applying late Summer or early fall at the William Way Center, with the first residents to move in early 2014.
AIDS activist Donald Carter says he plans to apply.
“I live in a third floor walk up now- and there will be an elevator here,” he says. “If that is the only reason to apply, I’ll be applying.”
Plans for the Anderson Apartments include a 5,000 square foot enclosed courtyard and nearly 2,000 square free of ground floor retail space.