Photos by Asia Morris. Photos of Anchor Place courtesy of Panic Studio LA.
This morning the City of Long Beach in partnership with the The Long Beach Community Investment Company (LBCIC) and Century Housing Corp. celebrated the grand opening of Anchor Place, a new affordable housing development at the Century Villages at Cabrillo (CVC).
Anchor Place is the fifth phase of the 27-acre CVC campus development, which includes the restoration of the original social hall located at the adjacent Savannah Cabrillo Naval Housing Complex and transit infrastructure improvements along River Avenue. CVC is a supportive housing community of over 1,500 residents, including veterans, homeless families and those at risk of experiencing homelessness.
“Thanks to our partners, the Anchor Place complex has provided an opportunity to marry so many important public policy initiatives; from helping to reduce veteran and family homelessness, to improving the connectivity of the Villages at Cabrillo community through our new campus transit hub, to investing in key infrastructure assets in our community, and helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” Senior VP of Century Housing and President of Century Villages at Cabrillo Brian D’Andrea said in a statement. “Century thanks the City of Long Beach for its leadership in bringing about these results.”
The five-story addition to the CVC campus includes a mix of 120 one-, two- and three-bedroom units, including 75 reserved for veterans experiencing homelessness and 45 units for extremely low-income residents.
Residents can also use the new building’s extensive open space and courtyard recreational areas, and will have access to supportive services, such as case management, physical and mental health services, employment services, life skills training and counseling.
A community room at Anchor Place.
The 75 units for veterans are subsidized through Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) vouchers provided by the Housing Authority of the City of Long Beach (HACLB) and Housing for Health, a County of Los Angeles flexible housing subsidy program. The vouchers provide $720,000 yearly for a total of $10.8 million, to guarantee housing support for homeless veterans for an initial 15-year period, according to the city.
A veteran and his wife, Hank and Kathy Elands who moved into the building two weeks ago, commented that Anchor Place is “a fantastic place to live” and added “the help you get from the staff over here is unsurpassed.”
“[…]This is a project or development that could exist anywhere in the city of Long Beach,” said Mayor Robert Garcia during the ceremony. “It’s quality housing, it’s supportive housing, it has architecture that any neighborhood could be proud to showcase and the fact that we treat and respect our veterans and folks that are experiencing homelessness with the quality level of this project I think says a lot about everyone involved […] but also about how we view and should treat people that are experiencing homelessness.”
An inaugural awardee of the State of California’s Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities program, funded through the state’s cap-and-trade auctions, the project will also include the relocation of the Long Beach Transit bus stop, currently located just outside the development, into the center of the CVC campus. The state funds combined with grant monies from private foundations will support the new transit hub.
Funding for Anchor Place was provided through a variety of funding sources to include:
- A HOME loan from The LBCIC.
- Construction financing from Wells Fargo Bank;
- An Affordable Housing Program (AHP) loan.
- A Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) loan through the County of Los Angeles Department of Mental Health (LACDMH) and the California Housing Finance Agency
- Financing from the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program (AHSC) through the State of California and the Strategic Growth Council.
- Grants from the County of Los Angeles Community Development Commission (LACDC), the Ahmanson Foundation, the Home Depot Foundation, and the 11th Hour Foundation
- A permanent loan from the California Community Reinvestment Corporation (CCRC).
- An equity investment by Wells Fargo through an allocation of tax credits from the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee (CTCAC).
“It gives us great pride as a company to invest in an affordable housing project that supports so much of what we value,” said Lesley Milovich, head of Community Lending & Investments at Wells Fargo, in a statement. “Anchor Place will provide safe, affordable housing for those who have sacrificed for our country, and we’re thrilled that it will benefit veterans and their families for generations to come.”
Those who spoke to commemorate the opening included Garcia, Seventh District Councilmember Roberto Uranga, Chair of the LBCIC John Thomas, Director of Health and Human Services Kelly Colopy, Century Housing Corporation Board Member Carrie Hawkins, Senior Vice President of Century Housing Corporation Brian D’Andrea, Veterans Affairs Long Beach Healthcare System Director Walt Dannenberg and Councilmember for the State of California Strategic Growth Council Mike Flad.
“Providing affordable, safe, and secure housing for veterans and families is a key to addressing the City’s housing needs,” Uranga said in a statement. “This development will support the tremendous efforts at the Century Villages at Cabrillo, and further promote vibrant and diverse communities.”
Anchor Place is located at the Century Villages at Cabrillo at 2000 River Avenue.
Asia Morris is a Long Beach native covering arts and culture for the Long Beach Post. You can reach her on Twitter and Instagram @theasiamorris and via email at [email protected]
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