Kenlawn Place will bring 45 affordable apartments to the North Linden neighborhood along with 5 affordable single family homes.
Homeport is very proud to be a thriving nonprofit real estate development company in the people business. It was created in 1987 in tandem with the Community Shelter Board when city and civic leaders in Central Ohio saw a need to address both homelessness and affordable housing.
Today, Homeport is the largest locally-focused nonprofit developer of affordable housing in Central Ohio with 2,409 rental apartments and homes in 38 communities. Its 6,279 residents, almost half of whom are 18 years old or younger, can access a broad range of services from after-school programming to emergency assistance for rent and utilities. Homeport also links its residents to food, furniture and employment assistance as well as medical and mental health services.
“Resident services enhance the chances of family, financial and community stability. This leads to jobs, better health and improved economic conditions, as well as financial education. It is what separates us from other home providers,” says Homeport president and CEO Bruce Luecke.
“Typically, we work with individuals, families and seniors making 60 percent or less of the area
median income,” says Luecke. “We are creating strong communities by developing quality, affordable homes on a cornerstone of dignity, security and opportunity.”
Luecke was a bank executive when he took a bus tour organized by Homeport meant to both educate and engage community resident participation. He became a board member, then the board chair, and eventually the president and CEO.
“I never got off the bus,” Luecke says, “and there remain plenty of seats for people to make a
difference in addressing the critical need of affordable housing in our fast-growing community.”
Since its founding in 1987, Homeport has built more than 5,000 apartments and single-family homes, and counseled more than 30,000 individuals in need of financial and homebuyer education. In 2009, Homeport was awarded a LEED Platinum certification for its North of Broad neighborhood, the first of its kind in the Midwest. In 2009, Homeport made a pitch to “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” to build a home in Columbus. In 2011, Homeport staff helped build the home that became part of the ABC show’s two-hour Christmas special.
In 2016, the Ohio Department of Health awarded Homeport a “platinum” or highest-level award in recognition of its written policies prohibiting smoking in its apartments and homes. Homeport was named one of The Columbus Foundation Five Nonprofits to Watch in 2017. In 2020, Ohio Housing Finance Agency (OHFA) named Homeport as its top counseling agency for the year.