WOONSOCKET, R.I — CVS Health announced on Monday that it will invest $7.7 million with Raymond James Tax Credits Funds to build a 61-unit multifamily apartment home development called Uptown Sky for families in Tampa, Fla. This investment is part of the company’s commitment to address racial inequity and social determinants of health in underserved communities.
“When people have access to high-quality, affordable housing, it puts them in a better position to take care of their health and manage chronic disease,” said David Casey, SVP and chief diversity officer, CVS Health. “As part of our commitment to address social justice and racial inequity, we’re addressing social determinants of health at the community level in Tampa, which is where we can make a meaningful and lasting impact.”
The new Uptown Sky development will be located at 13603 North 12th Street in Tampa. Data compiled from the Census indicates that approximately 75% of residents identify as Black or Latino, and 60% live below the poverty line. Additionally, according to a recent report from the National Low-Income Housing Coalition, nearly half of American workers don’t earn enough to afford a one-bedroom apartment, and Tampa is reaching its highest rates to date, with rent increasing more than 20% in the last year.
CVS Health is working with co-developers Blue Sky Communities and University Area Community Development Corporation, a Tampa-area nonprofit, to develop Uptown Sky and provide comprehensive support to residents. Blue Sky Communities is a leading advocate for helping nonprofits and local governments reach their affordable housing goals by developing state of the art, environmentally-sound affordable housing units. University Area Community Development Corporation is focused on championing positive change in the economic, educational and social levels of the Tampa community through youth programs, adult education, affordable housing, workforce and resource assistance, and community engagement.
“This investment by CVS Health provides a vital link between big business and urban redevelopment,” said Shawn Wilson, president of Blue Sky Communities. “Many organizations recognize the impact that quality affordable housing and access to health care have on someone’s health and well-being, but it takes the financial commitment of partners like CVS Health and Aetna to help provide those services to communities in need.”
Uptown Sky will provide two and three-bedroom housing units at a reduced rent to families with demonstrated need. Additionally, all residents will have access to on-site supportive services in the neighborhood center located on the bottom floor of the building. It will serve as a hub for residents and will offer computer training, homeownership programs, workforce training and financial management programs. It will also include a multi-purpose classroom where individuals will have access to classes to encourage healthy habits, including art, dance, yoga and karate.
“We know that housing insecurity can have a major impact on a person’s health and well-being,” said Richard Weiss, President of the Florida Market for Aetna, a CVS Health company. “Our investment in the Florida community will ensure that individuals and families have access to quality, affordable housing.”