415 Franklin

415 Franklin is a comprehensive redevelopment of a historic, 3-story school building located in southeast Grand Rapids. Constructed in phases beginning in 1892, 415 Franklin was previously the home of Grand Rapids Christian High School and later used by the Michigan Department of Human Services until it was vacated around 2009. This redevelopment has 3 distinct uses that were incorporated within this one building that used to stand vacant and unused. (1) LIHTC affordable housing (2) nonprofit office space (2) worship space. Through a partnership with Madison Square Church, the Inner City Christian Federation and Chesapeake Community Advisors were the development team that developed the space for 2 of these 3 building uses. On floors 2 and 3, there are 41 units of affordable housing. On the first floor, separated from Madison Square Church’s space, there is approximately 10,000 square feet of community service facility space, in which Inner City Christian Federation occupies as their office space.

In partnership with the prior owner, Madison Square Church, ICCF envisions 415 Franklin as a catalyst for truly equitable community transformation. Housing + services + worship under one roof. A mixed-use building that is vibrant and active and engaging at all hours of the day; a walkable, beautiful, safe place that evokes a sense of community pride and investment. The rebirth of a historic building and a rewriting of a story marked by disinvestment. 415 Franklin has been repurposed to promote equity, offer new housing opportunities, and stimulate reinvestment in this community in ways that are inclusive.

On the ground floor of 415 Franklin, an outreach program of Madison Square Church will occupy approximately 14,000 sq. ft., offering designated spaces for worship, fellowship, and childcare opportunities. The church has retained ownership of this first floor space as an individual condominium unit. Separate from the church space, approximately 10,000 sq. ft. of the first floor will be dedicated as a community service facility that primarily serves low income households (80% AMI and below) as permitted by the IRS tax code, as 415 Franklin is located within a Qualified Census Tract. The services offered will focus on education, counseling, and training that improves the lives of community residents.

On the second and third floors, across approximately 43,000 square feet of floor space, forty (41) new affordable housing units will serve households at or below 80% of area median income. Of the forty (41) housing units, thirty-one (32) will be one-bedroom units and nine (9) will be two-bedroom units. One of the one-bedroom units will be a non-revenue on-site manager’s unit. A community space will be incorporated on the 3rd floor, accessible for the benefit of all residents of the apartments.


Development Type
Number of Units
Development Cost
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Project Start
January 2019
Project Complete
January 2020
Development Role
Development Consultant, General Partner, Long-Term Asset, Co-Developer
Unit Mix
Rockford Construction Company
Huntington National Bank

What Others Are Saying About Us

“I have worked with the principals of Chesapeake since the inception of Cinnaire in 1993. They have proven to be the most highly skilled and knowledgeable group of professionals we have ever worked with in this industry. Their creative and entrepreneurial approach to real estate development and finance have made them the number one choice for Cinnaire to assist us in complex and difficult real estate transactions. The use of Chesapeake in our Housing Tax Credit Year 15 disposition strategies has produced results for our investors that were beyond their expectations and has been a model we use in all of our disposition strategies. They are real estate experts extraordinaire with the added benefit of being socially minded. They not only care about the investor and owner benefits but also take into account a positive outcome for the residents.”