South Charlotte

New apartments for seniors are popular

A new complex of affordable apartments for seniors should be full within a few months of opening.

Steele Creek Senior Apartments opened in November with 120 units. More than 80 already are leased, and the developer believes occupancy will reach 100 percent in early 2012.

"I think there's a lack of housing for low- to moderate-income seniors," said Ray Smith, specialty group director for Wood Partners, the national company that developed the apartments. "Because of all the incentive programs, we've been able to provide housing at a very low cost to the residents."

The apartments, on Branch Bend Lane, are modeled after Prosperity Creek Senior Apartments, which opened in north Charlotte several years ago. Smith said that project has been "immensely successful."

Wood Partners worked with city, state and federal agencies to finance the project, which is open to people at least 62 years old who make less than 60 percent of the median income for the Charlotte area, Smith said. The area's median annual income is about $48,000, according to census figures.

Many seniors who have moved into the two senior apartment complexes in Charlotte have moved from older affordable housing projects in town, Smith said. The new complexes have mostly one-bedroom units.

Steele Creek and Prosperity Creek senior apartments have gazebos with outdoor grills, fitness centers, small libraries, community rooms and outdoor garden plots. The plots were so popular in Prosperity Creek that developers added more, almost enough for each unit to have one, Smith said.

Wood Partners builds similar projects all over the U.S., and it is "actively looking" for other sites in Charlotte, Smith said.

Child care

A new day care on Arrowpoint Lane is offering two shifts of child care.

Kiddie Academy of Charlotte-Arrowood, which offers educational-based care, accepts children six weeks through 12 years old. The center is open for two shifts: 6:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.-10:30 p.m.

Henry Emezie is the owner of the new Kiddie Academy, and Lisa Horton is the director. The center is offering special introductory rates on tuition. To find out more, visit kiddieacademy.com/charlotte-arrowood or call 704-525-6337.

The center is in the Arrowpoint Business Park next to Microsoft.

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