Johnsburg approves senior housing development at former elementary school property

Complex planned for former James C. Bush school site

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A developer plans to convert a former Johnsburg School District 12 building into an affordable housing complex.

The Village Board recently approved a proposal for the former James C. Bush Elementary School, 2117 W. Church St.

General Capital Group – a real estate firm with locations in Chicago, Northbrook, Milwaukee and Fox Point, Wisconsin – plans to turn the facility into a two-story, 78-unit residential complex for people age 55 and older.

Residents have expressed concerns about traffic, surrounding property values and the location of the proposal.

General Capital plans to close on the property later this year and open the complex in 2020, according to village documents. The company plans to take advantage of federal tax credits under the Section 42 housing program, which provides credits to developers of affordable housing units.

The Johnsburg complex will be restricted to people who make at or below 60 percent of the median household income, or $35,580 for an individual and $40,620 for a two-person household, according to village documents.

The complex is expected to offer 67 one-bedroom units, which typically would cost about $850 a month, and 11 two-bedroom units that could cost about $1,033 a month, according to village documents.

Project-based housing vouchers also could help people who make 30 percent of the median income, or $29,650 annually. Rent for people who use housing vouchers would be $405, according to village documents.

General Capital touts multiple housing and business park developments in Wisconsin.

The firm also has developed an affordable housing property in Port Byron, Illinois, a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement center and a U.S. Coast Guard and Customs and Border Protection center in Florida, according to its website.

District 12 shuttered the 45,480-square-foot school as part of a $41 million facilities overhaul. The project included closing the school and moving its students to an improved Johnsburg Junior High School campus.

The board approved the $750,000 sale of the property last year.