Bawcomville affordable housing complex set to open in April

Bawcomville affordable housing units grand opening
Published: Mar. 21, 2023 at 7:32 PM CDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - MGM development group celebrated the grand opening of the Sandal Family Apartments on Mar 21, 2023. The $15.3 million complex offers 40 three-bedroom, two-bathroom units, 20 two-bedroom, two-bathroom units, and 4 one bedroom, one bathroom units, along with a computer lab, fitness center, and high speed internet.

Jeff Glover, a partner of MGM Development Group, says the rent will be between $600-$800 per month, depending on tenant income.

Glover says this project will not only have long-term impacts on the economy, but more importantly, it will impact children born into poverty.

“When you look at Bawcomville, it has one of the highest percentages of houses that are damaged or vacant and so there’s a tremendous amount of substandard housing and a tremendous number of children living in poverty in this area,” Glover says.

According to the congressional research service report in 2022, 40% of children under the age of five in Ouachita Parish are living in poverty. Glover says this new complex will help children break the cycle of poverty.

“The key to addressing childhood poverty is to provide stable, affordable housing. It’s also to provide them good nutrition, as well as educational opportunities,” Glover says.

Larry Bratton, Police Juror for the Bawcomeville district (C), says these apartments will allow families to afford other necessities.

“Not having affordable living that ultimately helps you to use disposable income toward medical care, childcare, all of those other situations, it’s tough to break that chain,” Bratton says.

Glover says the main goal of the complex is to improve the discretionary incomes of families in the area, with the hopes that it will promote better school enrollment and higher educational scores.

“We can talk about all the money, we can talk about all of the economic development impact, but at the end of the day, the real impact is changing lives in helping children break the cycle of poverty and to get additional education,” Glover says.

MGM Development Group partnered with the Boys and Girls Club, the Wellspring, the United Way and the Ouachita Parish Police Jury in order to address other factors that contribute to chronic poverty, like food insecurity, and lack of educational resources.

Glover told KNOE they’ve already started accepting rental applications. He expects most units to be move-in ready by April.