Dec 4, 2023 - News

Attainable housing project set for Bentonville

Illustration of a repeating pattern of houses made out of hundred dollar bills.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Excellerate Housing, a part of the Excellerate Foundation, plans to build 200 housing units in Bentonville that will rent for $450 to $800 monthly.

  • The projected prices are based on ranges from 30%-60% of the area median income, which is $28,000 to $55,000 for a family of four, according to Excellerate.

Why it matters: NWA's high cost of housing makes it challenging for lower- and middle-range wage earners — think teachers, police and health care workers — to afford to live in the area.

Of note: As of June, average rent prices in NWA were up 10.6% to $952 from $860 a year earlier, according to the Arvest Skyline Report.

Details: The McAuley Place development will be built on 11.4 acres at the corner of SW I Street and SW 41st Street.

  • The first phase will include 60 units with 1-3 bedrooms and is scheduled for completion by the end of 2025.
  • An exact timeline for the additional 140 units hasn't been determined.

Backstory: The project is the result of public/private work between Excellerate Housing, Strategic Realty and Mercy Health of Northwest Arkansas.

  • Mercy sold the land to the Excellerate Foundation for $1.3 million — below market value. The foundation then donated the land to its housing arm.

The bottom line: McAuley Place will be part of the federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit program, under which rent amounts will be protected for the next 35 years by state and federal guidelines.

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