MICHAEL BUTLER in the Miami Herald DECEMBER 10, 2022
Banking giant JPMorgan Chase on Friday announced a commitment of $7.45 million to help increase the supply of climate-resilient affordable housing in Miami-Dade County, particularly in underserved neighborhoods.
The grant money is part of JPMorgan’s national plan to spend $400 million by 2026 to close the wide gap in home affordability among people of color.
In South Florida, nonprofits Miami Homes for All and Solar and Energy Loan Fund will share the funding. Miami Homes For All received a commitment of $4.45 million, while the energy loan fund will get $3 million. Both organizations are intent on serving minority urban communities like Liberty City and Allapattah.
Annie Lord, executive director of Miami Homes for All, hopes that the housing upgraded and built with the banking company’s grants can help displaced residents in lower-income communities.
Her housing advocacy group is “thrilled at the opportunity JPMorgan Chase has provided to innovate new affordable housing models with Black and Hispanic developers and property owners,” Lord said.
The money will start being used early in 2023, with the first project supporting the work of Black, Latino and Hispanic property owners and developers to create and preserve close to 50 units of affordable housing in the city.
Duanne Andrade, chief strategic and financial officer of the Solar and Energy Loan Fund, said the $3 million will support the work by Black, Latino and Hispanic property owners and landlords on climate-resilient affordable homes.
JPMorgan Chase’s head of neighborhood development Abigail Suarez said affordable housing is a focus of the company’s commitments like this one in South Florida and also “to develop repeatable and expandable housing solutions that can meet the needs now and to come in Miami-Dade and communities throughout the country.”
This year, JPMorgan has increased its support of Miami’s economic development. CEO Jamie Dimon spoke at Miami-Dade College in April to discuss the company’s participation in Tech Equity Miami, a $100 million pledge by government entities and corporations over five years to make Miami’s emerging technology sector accessible to people of all racial and ethnic backgrounds. In June, the company opened a community financial center designed to improve financial literacy in Little Havana.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava commended JPMorgan’s investment in sustainable affordable housing in the county. She also noted that Miami Homes For All and the Solar and Energy Loan Fund are both participants in her multi-pronged push — called the Building Blocks Plan — intended to improve the county’s severe housing affordability crisis.
The mayor said affordable housing is key to ensuring people of all socioeconomic backgrounds can partake in the county’s rapid growth.