Bay Area Affordable Housing Projects Receive Boost From Cap-and-Trade Grants
The California Strategic Growth Council yesterday awarded $17.5 million in state Cap-and-Trade funds to four affordable, transit-oriented housing projects in the San Francisco Bay Area. This latest round of affordable housing grants will help build 366 units for low-income families and seniors in the Bay Area.
The winning projects are:
- Eddy & Taylor Family Housing in San Francisco: Sponsored by the Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation, this 14-story project in the somewhat gritty Tenderloin neighborhood will offer 103 units, with a mix of studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom units; 30 of the units will be set aside for formerly homeless families. Currently used as a surface parking lot, the site is two blocks from the Market Street transit corridor and the Powell Street station, which is served by both BART and Muni light rail; due to the proximity to transit, no parking spaces will be provided. A key component is retail space for a fresh and healthy food market. Grant: $2,284,965
- 222 Beale Street in San Francisco: Developed by Mercy Housing California, this South of Market project will provide 120 units of affordable housing for families earning up to 50 percent of the area median income, with an on-site child care center. Given the project’s proximity to transit services, including the new Transbay Transit Center, the development will have no on-site parking. Grant: $6.5 million
- Riviera Family Apartments in Walnut Creek: Sponsored by Resources for Community Development, this project will provide 58 apartments close to downtown Walnut Creek and the BART station. The two buildings on two sites will include a mix of studios, and one-, two- and three-bedroom units affordable to low-income families. Grant: $678,706
- San Leandro Senior Housing: This 85-unit transit-oriented, affordable housing development is the second phase of a larger project sponsored by BRIDGE Housing Corporation that is transforming the existing BART parking lot into a residential community with commercial space and BART parking. The four-story Mission Style building will provide affordable one- and two-bedroom apartments to seniors earning up to 50 percent of the area median income. The newest complex will be adjacent to 115 family apartments currently under construction in phase I. Grant: $7,997,808
In all, the Strategic Growth Council awarded $32.4 million in fiscal year 2015-16 funds to eight projects in California yesterday, with more than half the funding targeted for the Bay Area. The awards are part of the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program, which is being implemented by the state’s Department of Housing and Community Development in coordination with the Strategic Growth Council and California Air Resources Board. Funding for the grants come from the state’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, which is fueled by proceeds from the state’s Cap-and-Trade auctions. MTC and the Association of Bay Area Governments played a role in screening and endorsing Bay Area projects submitted for the state funding.
The state's Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program is important from two standpoints, according to Anne Richman, MTC's Director of Programming and Allocations. “These types of affordable housing projects often have a hard time raising enough funding,” she said. “And for most of these projects, these state grants are the last chunk of money needed before construction can begin.”
In the first round of the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program, approved in the summer of 2015, the Strategic Growth Council awarded $47 million in Cap-and-Trade funds to 11 Bay Area affordable housing and mixed-use projects. The Eddy & Taylor Family Housing project in San Francisco and the Riviera Family Apartments in Walnut Creek benefited from the first round as well as the second round.
The Eddy & Taylor Family Housing in San Francisco has also received a loan from the Transit Oriented Affordable Housing (TOAH) revolving loan fund, which is administered by MTC and provides critical financing for the development of affordable housing and other vital community services near transit lines throughout the Bay Area.
Together with this second round of grants, Bay Area affordable housing and related projects supported by MTC have won nearly $65 million in state Cap-and-Trade funds in 2015. The first and second rounds of grants will help build a total of 982 affordable units in the Bay Area. The Strategic Growth Council will start accepting applications for the next round of affordable housing grants in early 2016. For more information, go to sgc.ca.gov. — Brenda Kahn