Owners of The Marc, an 89-unit apartment complex on the 3800 block of State Street, have confirmed the property is for sale. The project, which has been open about a year, was the first to offer experimental high-density-zoning bonuses in hopes of spurring the development of rental housing. By allowing developers to build more but smaller units, the intent was the construction of new rental units that would be “affordable by design.” The Marc — laden with amenities — proved controversial because it charged significantly higher than market-rate rents and was frequently cited by critics as proof the program couldn’t work.
Information included in the sales brochures will add salt to those wounds: 55 percent of all Marc residents, the brochure boasts, made more than $150,000 a year; 22 percent made in excess of $200,000. The city’s high-density housing program was designed to target households making between $76,000 and $127,000 annually. City Hall is currently exploring new measures to reduce the income levels such housing projects should target to hit more of the so-called missing middle, households making less than $76,000 a year. To that end, the Planning Commission will soon consider a measure that would require up to 15 percent of all units developed through this program to be earmarked for renters in this lower income bracket.