LEED Silver 2014
The new four-story Cotman Vistas opened in May 2013 and features 36 accessible units, all of which are currently occupied. From the beginning of the development process, the tenants of Circle Vistas were excited about and supportive of Cotman Vistas, embracing the opportunity to live in a modern, sustainable, green building with outstanding accessibility.
Cotman Vistas, developed by Maximum Accessible Housing of Ohio (MAHO), provides the best accessible and affordable housing for people with physical mobility disabilities. This certified LEED Silver building is a model of accessibility and sustainability in Northeast Ohio.
MAHO is a leader in accessible housing: it developed, owns, and manages five accessible apartment communities. Cotman Vistas was designed to replace MAHO’s oldest building, Circle Vistas. When MAHO renovated an old furniture warehouse into Circle Vistas in 1984, it was the first apartment community in Northeast Ohio specifically designed to allow people with mobility disabilities to live independently. Over 25 years later, the building and the accessibility features became obsolete.
The new four-story Cotman Vistas opened in May 2013 and features 36 accessible units, all of which are currently occupied. The building also features office space for the MAHO staff and a model unit to train practitioners on accessibility features. From the beginning of the development process, the tenants of Circle Vistas were excited about and supportive of Cotman Vistas, embracing the opportunity to live in a modern, sustainable, green building with outstanding accessibility. Now that they are settled in, the Cotman Vistas tenants are enjoying all their new homes have to offer.
Not only do the tenants need accessibility features, they also need affordability: their average income is less than $1,000 a month. MAHO received permission from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to transfer the Section 8 contract from Circle Vistas to Cotman Vistas. This enables our tenants to continue to pay only 30% of their income toward rent.
MAHO is committed to providing accessible and affordable housing that is also environmentally sustainable. Water conservation was a big part of the design of Cotman Vistas. The bathrooms feature water-saving faucets in order to maximize water conservation. Motion-activated lights manage electrical usage in the hallways, laundry and trash rooms. The materials used in the construction of the building are all environmentally friendly and non-toxic. Airflow intake units in the units were designed to provide fresh air to the tenants. Tenant Kathy Kwasniewski, who had lived in the old Circle Vistas building said, “The air quality in the apartments is much better. I have an easier time breathing and I sleep better.”
Cotman Vistas is located in the uptown University Circle area which has recently undergone a series of urban revitalization developments. MAHO seeks to preserve accessible and affordable housing in the area with the new building. Cotman Vistas shows that accessible design can look good and be sustainable.