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Ribbon-cutting celebrates new mixed-use affordable housing development in downtown Portsmouth named in honor of late Mayor James Holley III


August 11, 2022, Portsmouth, VA…New high-quality affordable housing was made possible by the opening of Holley Pointe at 622 Effingham Street in downtown Portsmouth. Holley Pointe provides 50 two- and three-bedroom apartment homes affordable for workforce families, singles, and seniors that earn 30 to 80% of area median income. In addition to the housing, there is a 6,500-square foot commercial space on the first floor. 

Holley Pointe was named in honor of the late Mayor Dr. James Holley, III, who was a leader in developing the City’s downtown waterfront area.

Mayor Shannon Glover

“With the country’s inflation rates at an all-time high and the economy still reeling from the impact of COVID-19, affordable housing is even more critical today than in the past. Affordable housing is important to families, communities, and cities around the region. Not only does it provide a roof over the heads of its tenants, but decent affordable housing creates pride in one’s community, reduces stress, and promotes heathy living. It provides people with a sense of wellbeing,” said Portsmouth’s current elected leader Mayor Shannon Glover.

“In addition, affordable housing is an economic driver because it attracts and retains employees, and it’s a great selling point for recruiting new employers to Portsmouth,” continued Mayor Glover. “On behalf of the Portsmouth City Council, and the residents of the Portsmouth, we are so grateful to the Woda Cooper Companies for bringing this new housing complex to fruition.”

Holley Pointe was awarded Low-Income Housing Tax Credits by Virginia Housing to support financing including equity financing invested by Wells Fargo.  Rents are $350 to $1,135/month depending on size of unit and income restriction.

Community support was vital for planning and development in Portsmouth, said Bruce Watts, Woda Cooper’s Vice President – Development.  “Holley Pointe offers families and singles who are enlisted in the Coast Guard or part of the workforce at the Naval Shipyard or the Naval Hospital and other employers, affordable and safe homes with modern amenities and onsite management to assist residents,” Watts said.

“Families and also retired seniors on fixed incomes will benefit by having housing available that is affordable and convenient for jobs, services, and leisure activities in the downtown Portsmouth neighborhood,” said Bruce LaLonde, chair of the Portsmouth Redevelopment and Housing Authority.

Apartments at Holley Pointe offer two or three bedrooms plus 1.5 or 2 bathrooms, large open-concept living spaces, with fully-equipped kitchens featuring ENERGY STAR appliances, including dishwashers. The apartments will have individually-controlled HVAC; washer/dryer hookups; window blinds; and high-quality contemporary flooring and finishes.  Community spaces include a community room with kitchen, library, laundry, fitness room, elevator, park areas with benches, bike racks, and off-street parking.  In addition, there is an onsite leasing and management office.

Holley Pointe is to be certified EarthCraft Gold by Viridiant. Residents pay low monthly utility bills due to the green building methods, including energy-efficient kitchens, heating/cooling systems, windows, and water-saving bathroom fixtures.

Low-Income Housing Tax Credits were allocated by Virginia Housing.  “Virginia Housing is proud to take part in the Holley Pointe property and help sustain affordable housing in the Portsmouth community with these 50 units. Helping communities thrive through affordable rental units is key,” said Art Bowen, Managing Director of Rental Housing at Virginia Housing.

Wells Fargo invested in the tax credits in exchange for equity financing and also provided a construction loan.  “The demand for safe, quality, affordable housing continues both here in Virginia and around the nation, and it remains a top priority for us,” said Brandon Weber, Vice President for Community Lending and Investment at Wells Fargo. “This beautiful new space will add vibrancy and diversity of life to this neighborhood, and Wells Fargo is extremely proud to have played a role in the development of Holley Pointe.”

Cedar Rapids Bank & Trust was the lender for the permanent debt.  “Supporting the development of new affordable housing options is critical in our mission as a lender supporting neighborhoods and communities,” said Michael J. Goerdt, Vice President, Specialty Finance Group, Cedar Rapids Bank & Trust. “We are pleased to provide financial support to Woda Cooper Companies’ Holley Pointe which is a great new addition to Portsmouth, providing 50 affordable two- and three-bedroom rental homes and commercial space for business development in a vibrant neighborhood.” 

Architect for Holley Pointe is Hooker DeJong Architecture with general contracting by Woda Construction, Inc. Civil engineer is Hoggard-Eure Associates and structural engineer is Speight Marshall Francis.  Woda Cooper’s management division oversees day-to-day operations at Holley Pointe including leasing, property maintenance, and ongoing management to assist residents. For more information about leasing, visit or call 757-323-4981.

About Woda Cooper Companies, Inc.

Woda Cooper Companies, Inc. and its affiliates specialize in the development, design, construction, and management of high-quality affordable multi-family apartments, senior communities, and single-family homes. The company marked 30 years in business May 2, 2020, with operations in 16 states and a portfolio of approximately 400 communities and 16,000 units. Green building is standard with certifications including Passive House, Zero Energy Ready Homes, LEED, Enterprise Green, EarthCraft, and ENERGY STAR. Woda Cooper has offices in Savannah, GA; Indianapolis, IN; Shelbyville, KY; Queenstown, MD; Mackinaw City, MI; Columbus, OH; and Norfolk, VA. Affordable Housing Finance magazine ranked Woda Cooper Companies 10th in nation among Developers and 17th among Owners in 2022.

Ribbon-cutting with dignitaries, stakeholders, and residents at Holley Pointe in Portsmouth, VA. Some of those shown include front row: Councilmember William E. Moody, Jr; Mayor Shannon Glover; US Congressman Bobby Scott; State Senator L. Louise Lucas; Councilmember Lisa Lucas Burkes; City Manager Tonya Chapman; Councilmember Chris Woodard, State Delegate Nadarius Clark; Portsmouth Redevelopment & Housing Authority Chair Bruce LaLonde.