By Steven Hoffman

Staff Writer

State Rep. John Lawrence shared good news with Oxford Borough officials this week, announcing that Whitehall Acres Apartments is in line for significant upgrades that will be made possible in part because of a helping hand from a state agency.

The Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA) has approved a Low-Income Housing Tax Credit of $6.7 million for the renovation of Whitehall Acres Apartments.

The approval of the tax credits, which Lawrence strongly supported, will allow for the renovation of affordable housing units located on six acres in the middle of Oxford Borough. The 16-building complex includes 64 apartments that were built in 1972 and are in need of significant attention, as Lawrence witnessed in a tour of the property with community leaders earlier this year. 

Lawrence said at the Oxford Borough Council meeting on Monday night that Conifer Realty, which acquired Whitehall Acres in December 2011, is planning to invest a total of more than $9 million on the upgrades.

 “There is a significant shortage of affordable housing for low-income families in Southern Chester County, and Whitehall Acres has not seen significant updates since its original construction,” Lawrence said. “The new ownership has made a commitment to completely renovate the property, which will benefit both the residents of Whitehall and the surrounding community of Oxford Borough.” 

Lawrence told council that there were 74 applicants seeking the tax credits this year, and only 24 of the applications were approved for funding.

“The PHFA credits were in high demand with very limited availability, and I am pleased to see a good part of this funding come to our community,” Lawrence said. “The renovation of Whitehall Acres is part of a continued and coordinated effort to revitalize the borough of Oxford.”