Tag Archives: fishers

Partner feature: RealAmerica builds housing for ‘missing middle’ seniors

Indianapolis developer RealAmerica continues to stride ahead of the curve, building innovative housing concepts in Fishers. One of its newest properties, Ritchey Reserve, is designed for growing group of seniors.

With the retirement age rising and pensions decreasing, many seniors are unable to simply retire and live in a high-priced condo. Yet based on their income, they are unable to qualify for affordable housing options.

RealAmerica owner and President Ronda Shrewsbury Weybright, calls this the “Missing Middle”—and aims to fill the gap.

Expected to debut this summer, Ritchey Reserve provides 55 apartment homes for seniors ages 62 and older, offering all of the desirable luxury amenities at attainable price points.

Another innovative concept is RealAmerica’s independent senior services model. Why charge seniors a flat fee for all-inclusive services when most don’t even utilize all services offered? At Ritchey Reserve, there is no added cost for services that may not be used. Allowing residents to choose the services they want based on individual needs and preferences and then helping connect them with those services is the goal of Ritchey’s concierge service component.  

Services include helping residents connect with local providers, continue their rehabilitation or physical therapy, receive regular health checks and on-site quarterly health and wellness screenings, schedule beauty services at the on-site salon, ride a shuttle to local shopping centers and events, request local grocery and prescription delivery, and coordinating food delivery services.

Located in the heart of Fishers on the Nickel Plate Trail at 106th Street and Hague Road, Ritchey Reserve is surrounded by a woodland preserve and includes two miles of wooded trails, encouraging seniors to stay active. All RealAmerica properties are pet friendly, and Ritchey’s amenities include a dog park and pet wash station.

The on-site library and hair salon make it easy for seniors who prefer not to leave the facility. For visiting families from out of town, a guest suite is available for rent. For seniors that have a green thumb, raised bed community gardens are included to encourage residents to grow their own food and stay active.  

Ritchey Reserve’s grand opening is tentatively scheduled for August 2021 with move-in dates as early as July. The waitlist is filling fast, and applications are now being accepted. For more information and to get on the list, visit HomeAtRitcheyReserve.com or call (317) 842-5512.

To learn more about Ronda’s vision for serving seniors in Fishers, please watch this video: https://youtu.be/OkKSVFEqUbo 

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RealAmerica is supporting HAND as a Partner-level sponsor for 2021-2023.

Fishers City Council OKs HAND rezoning request

The Fishers City Council voted 5-4 on Feb. 15 to approve HAND Inc.’s request to rezone 1.8 acres of mostly vacant land that could be the site of 11 affordable rental cottages.

Their decision allows HAND to proceed with planning for its proposed Cumberland Cottages development at the southwest corner of 141st Street and Cumberland Road.

An application for project funding through the HOME Investment Partnerships Program is due in May, with a decision expected in August.

Cumberland Cottages would be HAND’s first rental property in Fishers. As designed, it would include 11 two- and three-bedroom rental cottages clustered around shared green space.

City approval was far from certain after members of the Fishers Plan Commission voted 8-1 against the rezone request, citing the planned density, the property’s location near a roundabout, and traffic concerns.

“We are used to getting push-back whenever we propose a new development,” HAND Executive Director Andrea Davis said. “Once construction is done and residents move in, though, most critics realize our properties are actually a community asset.”

Staff at Fishers’ Planning and Zoning Department recommended the City Council approve the rezoning, and HAND worked to address members’ concerns about Cumberland Cottages.

Although several members of the Plan Commission and City Council suggested another site might be more appropriate for the development, Davis explained the the Cumberland Road property is ideal because of its proximity to a wide range of services as well as jobs.

Adding 11 units to an area that already has hundreds of homes—including clusters of attached housing that are far more dense than Cumberland Cottages would be—will not significantly effect traffic, Davis said.

The proposed Cumberland Cottages, shown just southwest of the roundabout at 141st Street and Cumberland Road, would add 11 rental cottages to an area that has hundreds of homes.

A letter from the city’s traffic consultant, prepared at the request of the Fishers Engineering Department, confirmed that 11 cottages would have “no negative effect on the surrounding street system” or on the nearby roundabout.

HAND and its development team will continue to work with the city to fine-tune the Cumberland Cottages proposal. One priority will be to identify funding to upgrade the planned carports to garages.

HAND also plans to form a task force to explore future housing opportunities in Fishers, including homeownership options.

Davis said the Noblesville-based nonprofit already has heard from several Fishers residents interested in renting a unit in Fishers. If the project is funded, the waiting list for Cumberland Cottages will open in 2022.

The Cumberland Cottages development team includes architect David Rausch Studio, Weihe Engineers, and Meyer Najem Construction.

Given the shortage of affordable housing options in the suburbs, local media outlets have been covering HAND’s proposal:

Introducing … HAND’s Cumberland Cottages

HAND Inc. is proposing to develop almost 2 acres of vacant land at the southwest corner of 141st Street and Cumberland Road in Fishers, where it would build 11 rental homes oriented around shared green space.

The Fishers City Council held the first reading of a proposed Planned Unit Development ordinance governing the site on Dec. 21. The city Plan Commission is expected to review the plans Feb. 3.

HAND hosted open houses on Dec. 14 and Dec. 15 to share details of the proposed workforce housing development with neighbors and gather their feedback. Early responses were generally favorable.

Before HAND can develop the property, it needs to be rezoned. Once that happens, the Noblesville-based nonprofit will apply to the Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority for project funding.

If approved as proposed, the development—called Cumberland Cottages—would include 11 two- and three-bedroom cottages, each with a porch. Planned site amenities include an accessible community garden.

“We are excited about the opportunity to put this vacant land to use and benefit the community by building homes that single parents and others will be able to afford,” said HAND Executive Director Andrea Davis.

The 2018 Hamilton County Housing Needs Assessment showed single-earner households that need more than one bedroom have a hard time finding rentals to fit their budgets.

Founded in 2003 as Hamilton County Area Neighborhood Development Inc., HAND owns eight rental properties with a total of 137 units in Hamilton and Boone counties.

Its most recent development was Home Place Gardens, a 10-unit, $2.5 million community along 106th Street in Carmel.

Cumberland Cottages would be HAND’s first property in Fishers.