Case Study

NMTC Case Study for Women’s Center and Shelter

calendar iconJanuary 20, 2021


Since 1974, Women’s Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh (WC&S) has served victims of domestic violence and helped women regain their independence and confidence. One of the first shelters for domestic violence victims in the country, WC&S has long been at the forefront of the movement against this egregious crime. In 2016 alone, WC&S served 496 residents, providing 13,846 safe bed nights for women and children fleeing abusive relationships. It also provided more than 28,800 hours of resident counseling, non-resident counseling, legal aid referrals and support and other services to a total of 6,508 women and children. Based on WC&S data, the per capita income of women served during FY 2014/15 was $4,093 and household income was $7,607.

Sadly, the need for WC&S’s services far outweighs its 38,000 square foot capacity. In 2016, 500 women and children were turned away from the shelter due to overcrowding. There has also been a dramatic rise in the number of children needing to be served, and the accessibility of information on the Internet has made “hiding in plain sight” impossible, requiring a complete overhaul to the way the facility is accessed and monitored for safety.

The renovation of the shelter will: (i) add and enhance children’s areas; (ii) increase bed counts by 33%, from 36 to 48; (iii) create better, more efficient office, clinical and administrative space; (iv) overhaul the security and safety measures at all access points and provide safe sanctuary space within the facility; (v) update all of the mechanical and roof systems, which have reached the end of their useful life; and (vi) vastly improve energy efficiency with a LEED-certified design. This project supported 25 full-time construction jobs at an average wage of $42.50 an hour. Upon completion, the shelter expects to hire and retain a total of 51 permanent employees at a wage of $16.82 per hour to support operations. Economic estimates predict the project will create 23 indirect and induced jobs providing $1,129,000 in added wages for the region.

The Financing

With total project costs of $13.2 million, WC&S combined financing from a number of community partners, including a NMTC Allocation from Commonwealth Cornerstone Group ($5 million) and Allocation from Pittsburgh Urban Initiatives ($7.5 million), to fully fund the project. In addition to the Allocation and charitable contributions, permanent debt was provided by Huntington Bank.

“The NMTC allocation and additional tax credits invested in this project are vitally important as they help to ensure WC&S meets the current and future needs of our community.”
Sara Davis Buss, Chairman of the Board, Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh

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February 2017



Women’s Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh



Pittsburgh Urban Initiatives /Commonwealth Cornerstone Group



PNC Bank



Huntington Bank



Pittsburgh, PA






38,000 Square Feet
76 Direct Jobs
Capacity: 700



State/Local Economic Zone Federal MUA