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California City Council to discuss revival of senior housing
This story appeared in the Antelope Valley Press
Tuesday, February 17, 2009.
By ALLISON GATLIN
Valley Press Staff Writer
CALIFORNIA CITY - City Council members, acting as the Redevelopment
Agency, will once again take up the idea of building a senior housing development.
The agency at its meeting today will consider a proposal to redesign
the existing subdivision at The Legends to be a senior housing development.
The meeting, which precedes the regular City Council meeting, begins
at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers at City Hall, 21000 Hacienda Blvd.
The proposal, by developer Viento Inc., includes redesigning six existing
units and construction of 12 additional units for a price of $4.1 million.
The six existing units are stand-alone homes, although they are closely
grouped together, Viento President James Quiggle said. The additional units
will use the same design as the existing Desert Jade senior housing projects,
with multiple units within a single building.
The proposal calls for three buildings for the 12 additional units.
Additional units, for a total of 80, will eventually be built by Viento
as the agency has need and funding for future phases.
The existing homes were built by The Legends developer as senior retirement
homes but never sold once the housing market dropped.
Constructing city-owned, subsidized senior housing at that location
will not only add needed capacity but also prevent the area from becoming
blighted, Quiggle said.
According to the proposal, Desert Jade manager Judy Farmer has said
the expansion can be handled with existing management.
Construction of a senior housing development has been a priority of
the redevelopment agency for some time. The existing three Desert Jade
complexes have proven successful and have lengthy waiting lists for tenants.
An earlier Viento Inc. proposal, initially approved by the agency in
June but later dropped, called for building the complex on 6.8 acres owned
by the agency. It offered exclusive rights to Viento and builder Fourstar
Constructions to package a proposal to the California Housing Finance Agency
for development and financing of a facility with at least 40 and up to
The estimated cost for the full 80 units was $9.2 million, with $5.2
million of that coming from a 30-year loan from the state housing agency.
Although that initiative stalled, newly elected Mayor Larry Adams cited
completion of additional low-income senior housing as one of his priorities
for his term.
The project was also one of those agreed to by the City Council during
a priority-setting workshop earlier this month.
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