CINCINNATI—Fifth Third Bank’s Community Development Lending and Investments group has closed on more than $500 million in loans and investments in 2021. The financing provided for over 6,000 units of new and preserved housing for low- and moderate-income people, including families and seniors. In addition, over six loans and investments went to development projects that will provide jobs and services for communities in the Bank’s footprint.
The Community Development Lending and Investments group focuses on benefiting low- to moderate-income communities and people by creating or preserving affordable housing, providing access to capital for small businesses and revitalizing distressed areas by investing in commercial buildings.
"Fifth Third’s Community Development Lending and Investments group works in collaboration with public and private organizations to help revitalize neighborhoods so people will have the opportunity to thrive in the environments where they live and work," said Keith Burgess, senior vice president and group head of Community Development Lending and Investments. "These projects are critical to the stabilization of neighborhoods and economic growth for the community’s residents."
Two notable investments in 2021 were the John Arthur Flats and Blair Lofts affordable housing projects in Cincinnati. The John Arthur Flats project contains 57 newly constructed one- and two-bedroom apartments for LGBTQ seniors whose income range from 30% to 60% of the area mean income. The Blair Lofts project is in Cincinnati’s Avondale neighborhood, one of Fifth Third’s Neighborhood Investment Program recipients. The project will include 64 one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments that also will be available to families earning between 30% and 60% of the area’s mean income.
The Fifth Third Community Development Lending and Investments group provided $9.4 million of equity and a $10.5 million construction loan for Blair Lofts. It provided $13.2 million of equity and a construction loan of $7.6 million for the John Arthur Flats.
In addition to providing lending and investments for affordable housing, the Community Development Lending and Investments group also invests in health care-related projects such as Five Rivers Health Centers, a federally qualified health center. The group’s investment will assist the organization in the construction of its new Edgemont campus, located in the racially and economically diverse neighborhood of West Dayton, Ohio. The new facility will allow Five Rivers Health Centers to offer services in several specialties, including internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, dental, hematology and oncology, psychiatry, sports medicine, addiction medicine, general surgery, infectious diseases, gastroenterology, acupuncture, and massage therapy in one location. The new complex will serve over 15,000 patients annually, regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay, and will include 12,000 square feet for future expansion.
Gina McFarlane-El, chief executive officer of Five Rivers Health Centers, said the group’s investment will help the center grow to offer services to more people. "Without the unwavering commitment from Fifth Third to this project, there is no way that Five Rivers Health Centers could have embarked on this endeavor. In our short 10 years as a provider to the underserved, we have outgrown all of our spaces, and this new Edgemont Campus in West Dayton sets our organization up for success."
While the majority of the Community Development and Lending Investment group’s focus is on brick and mortar developments, in October of 2021, with the group’s investment, Fifth Third was one of nine banks to invest a total of $85 million in first-round funding for the National Equity Fund Emerging Minority Developer Fund. This fund was established to help developers of color overcome high barriers to entry in accessing Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) to develop affordable housing. The EMDF does this by providing tax credit equity capital combined with technical support and tailored project underwriting to help emerging minority developers establish a track record of success and improve their balance sheet and financial stability as they grow their businesses.
"The Emerging Minority Developer Fund was created to break down barriers and drive affordable housing forward while openly addressing and fighting the inherent racism, discrimination, and inequity that still exists today in systemic LIHTC funding practices," said Matt Reilein, president and CEO of National Equity Fund. "Fifth Third’s support for the fund will help the next generation of developers to establish and strengthen their businesses, which will ultimately create more opportunities to build and preserve affordable housing solutions for individuals, families, and communities."
Since 1989, Fifth Third’s Community Development Lending and Investment Group has funded over 900 projects that focus on affordable housing, commercial, retail, office, and historic buildings. To learn more about Fifth Third’s community development and empowerment efforts, please visit go.53.com/Community.
About Fifth Third
Fifth Third Bancorp is a diversified financial services company headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, and the indirect parent company of Fifth Third Bank, National Association, a federally chartered institution. As of Sept. 30, 2021, Fifth Third had $208 billion in assets and operated 1,100 full-service banking centers and 2,336 branded ATMs in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Florida, Tennessee, West Virginia, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. In total, Fifth Third provides its customers with access to approximately 52,000 fee-free ATMs across the United States. Fifth Third operates four main businesses: Commercial Banking, Branch Banking, Consumer Lending, and Wealth & Asset Management. Fifth Third is among the largest money managers in the Midwest and, as of Sept. 30, 2021, had $541 billion in assets under care, of which it managed $61 billion for individuals, corporations and not-for-profit organizations through its Trust and Registered Investment Advisory businesses. Investor information and press releases can be viewed at www.53.com. Fifth Third’s common stock is traded on the Nasdaq® Global Select Market under the symbol "FITB."