Detroit's newest affordable senior apartment has its first resident

A brand new two bedroom, two bath apartment that's within walking distance of Woodward and the stadiums? Must cost a fortune right?


The first resident of a new affordable senior housing complex moved into his apartment Tuesday, on a retired flight attendant's salary no less. If you're impressed by the end product of this story, you'll be disappointed to learn how the resident found his new housing; it's remarkably abrupt.

"I wrote Dan Gilbert and Bedrock a letter and Mr. Dan Gilbert answered me," said Leanard Walker.

Walker just moved into The Flats at 124 Alford, the first of six apartment buildings getting built under the City Modern project. Designed to accommodate the low rent necessities of area seniors, they are priced for those who make between $15,000 and $30,000 a year. 

"We're making this for people who have lived all their life in Detroit, and want to be a part of the city's future," said Mayor Mike Duggan.

Walker's rent is $635 a month. Considering the location, that's a steal. And the numbers only get better. Rent is going to depend on income. That's the lasting sentiment from Bedrock CEO Bill Emerson.

"...and it depends if you want a one bedroom or two bedroom, but it would run somewhere between $300 and $700 a month," he said.

"Seniors are in need of housing, I can tell you that first hand," said Duggan.

Bedrock Detroit, a real estate firm located in the motor city, specializes in these kind of projects. It has committed 20 percent of its residential portfolio to affordable housing units.