Low-income Housing Blocked by City Mayor?

March 23, 2011 / Elizabeth Buckley, Commercial Property Analyst

A real estate developer, MSP Real Estate Inc ahs recently filed a federal lawsuit against Mayor Jack Chiovatero and New Berlin for blocking the company to build a senior apartments and low-income housing development in the heart of the city. The company, according to a report, is seeking compensatory damages worth $12,995,996 and an undeclared amount of for not allowing MSP to construct the low-income housing and the senior apartments.

Low-income Housing Blocked by City Mayor?

In Hartsville, inline with lawsuit filing, the City of Hartsville filed a lawsuit against a commercial developer Balaji II after misleading Hartville’s official about its ability to finance a development in the city. According to the complaint, the construction developer mislead the city about financing the project by themselves without making a bank loan.

MSP filed the federal lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Milwaukee, while claiming that the city’s major reason for the cancellation of their approval to build the low-income housing project is because of the race of their prospective tenants.

New Berlin has already approved the company’s proposal to build the low-income housing and the senior apartment several months ago.

According to the filed lawsuit, the company alleges that New Berlin and its mayor, Jack Chiovatero, are violating the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Fair Housing Act, while asking the court to allow the company to continue with the project.

The report stated that several units of the senior apartments and low-income housing were supposed to be “disabled-accessible”. The city cancelled the approval after the public protested about the affordable housing.

MSP said in the lawsuit that the cancellation of their proposed low-income housing project is due to racial discrimination and of the perceived poorer socio-economic status of the possible tenants of the development project.

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