‘It’s been a long time coming:’ City breaks ground on senior housing complex

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Nearly 100 elderly Wichitans will soon have an updated place to live, and the city broke ground on Tuesday to renovate the McLean Manor senior living facility. 

Officials said the current building is outdated and in need of repair. The updated space will offer low-income housing to seniors. 

“There’s a difference between cheap housing and affordable housing,” Sally Stang, city of Wichita director of Housing and Community Services, said. “It needs to meet a level of quality, and unfortunately, Congress and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have underfunded public housing for decades.” 

These renovations are all made possible by the Department of Housing funds. The city applied for the Rental Assistance Demonstration funds in 2017 and received $17.3 million for the upgrades.  

Officials said the buildings were built in the 1970s and have outdated systems and are confident these upgrades will provide a stable and secure environment for residents. 

McLean Manor is one of four locations being renovated with RAD funds. Greenway Manor, Rosa Greg Garden and Bernice Hutchinson will also be updated. The total project will cost $36 million. 

Stang said the groundbreaking “speaks volumes to the need of public housing modernization and the need to invest in the properties that provide housing for our most vulnerable residents.” 

“RAD is providing the city a powerful tool to preserve and improve vital public housing units and ensure decent, safe, sanitary living conditions,” Stang said. “Now, more than ever, it is imperative that we be able to provide affordable housing that is also comfortable.” 

Renovations started at the end of November. Construction is expected to wrap up in Oct. 2022. 

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