Since 1999, Ascend has assisted in the development of mixed-finance, mixed-income affordable housing developments in partnership with the St. Louis Housing Authority through the federal affordable housing programs. Ascend participated in twelve developments, which contain over 1,350 units. The role of Ascend varies depending on the development and the sources of funding. Ascend’s primary function in the developments is as owner of the underlying land or lender.
As the owner of the land, all of Ascend’s property is subject to a long-term ground lease. In its lender role, Ascend receives grants, sub-grants, or donations and lends the proceeds to the development. The loans are payable only with cash flow and the proceeds are reinvested in the development’s operating reserve to ensure long-term affordability.
At various times, Ascend has also been designated a Community Housing Development Organization (CHDO) and a Community Based Development Organization (CBDO). Ascend continues to seek opportunities to participate in the development of high-quality affordable housing that helps to create thriving neighborhoods.