Skip to main content

Salem Heights Apartments

12 Pope Street
Salem, MA
  • Salem Heights unit kitchen and dining area
  • Salem Heights unit dining area
Deal Type: 
Year Built: 
Acquisition Date: 
Last Renovation: 
Number of Units: 

Salem Heights was built in the early 1970s as affordable housing under a HUD subsidized loan. In November of 2000, the ownership announced a plan to convert the complex to market-rate rents, a plan that was opposed by the tenants' organization and city officials. At the time, the 283 units represented 15% of the city's total privately-owned affordable housing supply. POAH collaborated with the interested parties to craft an alternative arrangement which relieved the owner of the property while preserving the units as affordable for 100 years. Eighty percent of the apartments are affordable for families with incomes below 60% of the median income. Ten percent are affordable to residents with incomes below 120% of median and 28 units are market rate apartments.

POAH began renovations in June 2021 to replace the building envelope; add new ventilation/filtration and cooling units in every apartment; convert 15 units to ADA compliant barrier free units; expand the community space, and exterior landscaping improvements to allow for more outdoor amenity space.  In 2023 POAH completed a $40M renovation that included a complete replacement of the building envelope (siding, sheathing, windows and roofs), major upgrades to the building systems (a new individualized HVAC unit in every apartment and the replacement of the kitchen plumbing stacks), an assortment of interior unit upgrades such as new kitchens, baths and flooring, and the conversion of 15 units to ADA standards. Additionally, the management office and resident amenity spaces were renovated and expanded. Residents also benefit from new and improved outdoor spaces; a new playground lies at the front of the building and upgrades to the existing patio and courtyard are underway. Sidewall solar panels have been installed and additional rooftop solar panels were be installed in 2023. The renovations drastically increased interior air quality and energy efficiency of the building, bringing it close to Passive House standards. With the help of ARPA and CDBG funding from the City of Salem, POAH installed resident wifi that is offered offered free to residents.

Project Partners

  • MassDevelopment
  • DHCD (MA Dept. of Housing and Community Development)
  • CEDAC (Community Economic Development Assistance Corporation)
  • Fannie Mae
  • MHP (Massachusetts Housing Partnership)
  • Boston Financial
  • Rockland Trust
  • East Boston Savings Bank
  • Eastern Bank