Developers of Affordable Housing
CARA SQUARED is one the top affordable housing developers in our region, along with our prior company JP Affordable Housing.
In Jersey City alone we are responsible for 16 affordable housing projects.
Fifteen of those projects have come into fruition thanks to our collaboration with the
Jersey City Redevelopment Agency (JCRA) and various other, municipal, state, and federal agencies.
We thrive on the ability to make a difference in our municipality through hard work, diligence and teamwork. As experts in this field we have built a sum of more than 1,200 units of affordable housing. Our spectrum of accomplishments range from new construction to rehabilitated structures. Furthermore, we have created thousands of jobs through our projects in the region. Municipalities have also benefited by having premises back on federal and city tax rolls.
We have experience working from the ground up to working with modular units as evident in our latest project, OCEAN GREEN SENIOR APARTMENTS located at 744 Ocean Ave. Jersey City, NJ 07305. (see our video and blog section for more info)
To add, we also excel at the marketing, sales and rentals of our apartments and homes.
These are just a few of the services we provide:
Conduct Real Estate Property Closings
Assign a Project Manager to oversee Construction Rehabilitation
Work with First Time Home Buyer and/ Lenders
Help to expedite the Mortgage Process
Screen tenants for verification and mortgage eligibility
Assist Homebuyers to become credit worthy
Market the units for sale
Eugene P. O’Connell, president of Cara Squared has over 35 years of experience
as a Real Estate Attorney closing THOUSANDS OF RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE SALES AND PURCHASES. He has extensive experience handling both city and state affordability programs including: HOME, UHORP and Affordable Trust Fund and SNAP Funds.
THE CARA DEVELOPMENT TEAM
as a whole holds all the qualification needed to complete any development undertaking.
Eugene P. O’Connell’s practice since 1973 has been primarily real estate development, both residential and commercial properties, as well as municipal law, including tax abatement and zoning. As president of CARA since 2010, he has recently completed Ocean Green Senior Apartments, a 44 unit building housing senior citizens and clients with special needs. As president of
JP Affordable Housing since 1989, he has developed over 1,200 units of affordable housing for purchase and rental through out the State of New Jersey.
A graduate of Saint Peter’s College and Seton Hall University School of Law, in his early years as Counsel Mr. O’Connell served as Law Director for the City of Hoboken, Assistant Corporate Counsel for the City of Jersey City, as well as Assistant Prosecutor, Chief Grand Jury Section, Chief Municipal Court Section, and Trial Attorney for the County of Hudson.
He is a fellow of Straight and Narrow, Inc., New Jersey Bar Association and past President of The Hudson County Bar Association and Lincoln Association. Mr. O’Connell is also a Master Mason and has been Board Chair of The American Cancer Society in Hudson County. Involving these and various groups in Hudson County he has dedicated his time as a frequent presenter, participant and coordinator of Fund Raising Events.
Urban League of Hudson County Honoree 2019
Hudson County Hall of Fame 2018
Garden State Episcopal CDC & PERC - Longest Night Honoree 2018
Governor's Conference on Housing and Development - Leading Supportive Housing Award 2017
St. Peter's University Hall of Fame - Athletic Team Member 2017
Jersey City’s Irishman of the Year in 2015
St. Peter's University Hall of Fame - Athlete
Max Benjamin has been directly involved in all aspects of development for over 1,200 housing units for disadvantaged families, Seniors and Special Needs populations; as well as the acquisition and implementation of over $100 million of public and private financing for 38 development projects. Worked collaboratively with non-profit service providers and State and local government to successfully develop community-integrated Supportive Housing. Has experience in preparation and review of development budgets and operating pro forma projections; with national and regional bank underwriting and due diligence requirements; with financial leverage sources including: H.U.D. CDBG, HOME
and NSP; I.R.S. Sec. 42 Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program (LIHTC)
and tax-exempt bond financing; U.S. Treasury Sec. 1602 & Sec. 1603, ARRA 2009; State, local and foundation resources.
Odra Rodas joined the JP AFFORDABLE HOUSING team in 2001. With over a decade of experience in all phases of development serving as a liaison between the development team, construction team and municipal, state and federal agencies, Rodas is experienced in working with NJ Housing Mortgage Finance Agency on “Low Income Housing Tax Credits” and New Jersey Department of Community Affairs “Balanced Housing Program” and HUD (Section 8).
Various municipalities, investors and syndicators recognize her as the point of contact regarding housing projects related to JP AFFORDABLE
HOUSING and CARA. Under the direction of Mr. Eugene O’Connell
and MaxBenjamin of JP Affordable Housing and
CARA SQUARED, Rodas has served as a legal secretary, administrator,
construction phase assistant, post construction support, marketing coordinator, supportive housing coordinator, and asset management assistant of a multitude of Jersey City Redevelopment Agency (JCRA) projects including but not limited to rehabilitation projects and new construction for rent and for purchase.
Richard Greenspan is an accomplished construction professional with
extensive experience in the execution of real estate development projects and a distinguished track record of delivering projects on schedule and within budget constraints. He is an experienced leader with excellent relationship building and strong conflict-resolution skills. Recent projects include Comunilife’s El Rio - Sixty Five unit multifamily affordable & supportive housing project in the West Farms section of the Bronx, Ocean Green Senior Apartments – Five-story, 44-unit senior residential building, Low Income Housing Tax Credit project, Jersey City NJ.
Melida Rodas ~ Market and Media Relations Director,
Award Winning Artist and Writer - Community Activist
Areas of expertise:
Web and Digital Media Management
Real Estate Photography
Research and Analysis
Promotional Campaign Planning and Execution
Fluent in Spanish and English
Assisting in legal administration concerning real estate development including zoning and planning