April 27, 2018
75 Affordable Rental Apartments Open in North Park for Low-Income and Homeless Seniors
San Diego Housing Commission partnership development will remain affordable for 55 years
SAN DIEGO, CA — A first-of-its kind affordable housing development in North Park, constructed in partnership with the San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC), provides 75 new rental apartments for homeless and low-income seniors, such as Terry, who calls his corner unit his “miracle apartment.”
“I knew in my heart this is where I needed to be,” said 59-year-old Terry, a 15-year North Park resident whose income consists of disability benefits. He was the first person to apply to live at North Park Seniors, and he would walk by the build site, praying that he would get an apartment at the development, which celebrated its grand opening today.
Developed by Community HousingWorks, North Park Seniors is the first affordable housing development for seniors in the City of San Diego to provide programs for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender residents. The rental apartments are open to all low-income seniors ages 55 and older, regardless of their sexual orientation.
“Our vision for San Diego must be one where there is a place for everybody in our City, and this project … is all about that, because it’s not about your age, your orientation, or your economic class. This project says that there is a place for you in this City,” said California State Assembly Majority Whip Todd Gloria, who represents Assembly District 78, which includes North Park Seniors, located at 4200 Texas Street.
North Park Seniors consists of 75 rental apartments that are affordable for seniors with household incomes ranging from 50 to 60 percent of San Diego’s Area Median Income, currently $38,950 to $46,740 per year for a two-person household.
“This really does embody the greatness of urban design, about opportunity, affordable housing, transit-oriented development, housing for underserved communities — it’s all right here at North Park Seniors,” said San Diego City Councilmember Chris Ward, whose Council District 3 includes North Park. City Councilmember Georgette Gómez, who represents Council District 9, also attended the grand opening.
SDHC awarded eight federal rental housing vouchers to North Park Seniors through HOUSING FIRST – SAN DIEGO, SDHC’s homelessness action plan, to help seniors who had been experiencing homelessness to pay their rent. These housing vouchers are tied to the development, so that they can assist additional homeless households when a resident moves on.
“Finding a home they can afford in today’s expensive housing market is especially challenging for seniors with low income or who are experiencing homelessness. The San Diego Housing Commission’s partnership on North Park Seniors ensures that these apartments are affordable today and for the next 55 years for these vulnerable San Diegans,” SDHC Chairman of the Board Frank Urtasun said.
SDHC also directed more than 80 percent of the estimated $27,135,000 total development cost for North Park Seniors, including SDHC’s investment of a $7 million residual receipts loan, which consisted of:
- $1,760,000 from federal HOME Investment Partnerships Program Funds, awarded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to the City of San Diego and administered by SDHC; and
- $5,240,000 in City of San Diego Inclusionary Housing funds, which are also administered by SDHC.
In addition, SDHC authorized the issuance of $15 million in tax-exempt Multifamily Housing Revenue Bonds—approved by the San Diego City Council, sitting as the Housing Authority of the City of San Diego—toward the construction of North Park Seniors.
“This is what is best about San Diego — a whole community that turns out. People who are responsible for this happening, people that are living here, and then there are people who care about the fact that this is one of the most innovative projects in the United States,” City of San Diego Deputy Chief Operating Officer David Graham said.
The San Diego Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community Center, Inc. provides services on-site, such as case management, mental health services, social activities, fitness classes and educational workshops. The center’s CEO, Delores Jacobs, also participated in the grand opening ceremony.
“Today is a day of saying thank you because this was a decade of dreaming and work by many hands,” said Sue Reynolds, President & CEO of Community HousingWorks, which was also represented at the grand opening by its Board Chair Robert Gottlieb.
The five-story new construction development includes:
- 66 one-bedroom apartments, including one manager’s unit;
- 7 studios; and
- 3 two-bedroom apartments.
North Park Seniors also includes a community room with computers and kitchen; a laundry facility; an open courtyard with fireplaces and a barbecue area; an adjacent area of artificial turf with benches and a pet waste station; and multicolored artistic accents.
The apartments are located near major bus stations to Hillcrest and the Grossmont Transit Center, Fashion Valley and San Diego State University. They are also within walking distance of restaurants and additional amenities, such as shops and medical centers.
For more information about SDHC, visit www.sdhc.org
Vice President of Communications
San Diego Housing Commission