New 92-unit housing complex offers affordable options for Pinellas County residents

Pinellas County officials join developers in marking the opening of Palms of Pinellas, a 92-unit apartment complex that offers housing for a range of income levels.

LARGO — Pinellas County is taking another step toward addressing one of the community’s greatest needs with the opening of a new 92-unit workforce housing development in Largo.

County officials marked the opening of Palms of Pinellas April 25. It is an apartment community with one to three-bedroom units available to residents at a variety of income levels.

Palms of Pinellas provides an affordable housing option for local residents with many units restricted to households earning less than 50 percent of area median income and all units are capped at 150 percent of median income.

The $13.3 million project is the result of a public-private partnership, with Pinellas County contributing $938,000 to acquire the land using the Penny for Pinellas 1-percent sales tax and an additional $1.5 million from local and federal housing funds.

With Pinellas residents consistently ranking housing affordability as a significant community need in an annual survey, the county has taken a proactive approach by combining local government investment with state, federal and private dollars.

Through local funding sources including the Housing Trust Fund and the Penny-supported Land Assembly Fund, the county has set aside more than $37 million over the past decade, resulting in construction of more than 2,000 affordable housing units.

Palms of Pinellas was made possible through a partnership of Pinellas County government, the Pinellas County Housing Authority, Housing Finance Authority of Pinellas County, Norstar Development USA and Valley National Bank.

Income limits will apply to all units and not exceed 150 percent of the area median income with 10 units restricted to 80 percent of area median income and an additional 19 units further restricted to 50 percent of this level.

Demand for affordable homes is high in the Tampa Bay region and across the nation, with Palms of Pinellas almost fully leased before its grand opening.