On the heels of opening affordable housing complex the Loretta in Northwest Austin, the city Housing Department and its development partners last week debuted a new, mixed-income townhouse community in the East St. Johns neighborhood.

The A at St. Johns in the 1000 block of East St. Johns Avenue has six townhomes for buyers, three of which are income-restricted.

The three affordable townhomes have two bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms and measure about 1,200 square feet. All of the affordable homes have been sold for $245,800, priced for households making 80 percent of the median family income. The remaining three townhomes, available at market rate, have three bedrooms, 2.5 baths, and about 1,928 square feet.

Kitchen inside one of the affordable townhomes with modern finishesCity of Austin

Capital A Housing and Constructinople Design and Build developed the A at St. Johns with funding provided through the Austin Housing Finance Corporation Ownership Housing Development Assistance and Affordability Unlocked development bonus programs.

The Affordability Unlocked program waives or modifies some development restrictions with the goal of increasing low- and moderate-income housing. In this case, it allowed the A at St. Johns developers reduce the setbacks and parking requirements and build more units, according to the city. Construction took about a year to complete.

The city's 2022 Austin Strategic Housing Blueprint Scorecard indicates that District 4, where the A at St. Johns is located, was the only district to meet at least 50 percent of its 10-year goal after five years.

As the district, home primarily to African American and Hispanic families for generations, "faces rapid gentrification and displacement," said Councilmember and District 4 rep José "Chito" Vela, "this is really the sweet spot for what we are trying to accomplish with increasing the affordable housing supply."