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Los Angeles Celebrates Groundbreaking of First Residential Phase of Jordan Downs Revitalization

LOS ANGELES, CA, June 5, 2017—Jordan Downs, a 1950s-era public housing development in Watts, will achieve a major milestone today with the ceremonial groundbreaking of the first phase of new residential construction. The program and ceremony will take place from 3-5pm at E. 99th Place and Laurel.

Phase 1A, developed by nonprofit BRIDGE Housing, will consist of 115 affordable rental apartments in 12 buildings on 3.15 acres. Designed to a LEED Silver certification level, the property will maximize solar opportunities, energy efficiency and environmental sustainability, and will have an on-site management office along with community spaces such as a kitchen, lounge and computer room.

In 2008, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA), in conjunction with residents and a broad spectrum of stakeholders, initiated a plan to rebuild Jordan Downs into a mixed-use, mixed-income community: a vibrant urban village that will serve as a national model for the renewal of public housing. The team of BRIDGE Housing and The Michaels Organization was selected as Master Developer of Jordan Downs in 2012.

The Master Plan developed by HACLA, its original design team and the residents of Jordan Downs, has continued a seamless evolution under the leadership of BRIDGE/Michaels with many of the key players in ongoing roles. The long-term, public-private effort will rebuild 700 units of distressed public housing and create, at a minimum, another 710 new homes with a range of affordability, along with a new community and recreation center, approximately 165,000 square feet of retail, nine acres of green space, and neighborhood programs and services to improve the lives of current and future generations.

"Today is about more than getting shovels in the ground at Jordan Downs ― we're opening a new chapter in the story of Watts," said Mayor Garcetti. "This redevelopment will create good affordable housing for people who need it, attract new investment, and deliver clean, safe places for our children to grow.”

“The redevelopment of Jordan Downs sets a new precedent for public housing across the entire country,” said Los Angeles City Councilman Joe Buscaino. “The redevelopment will not only provide additional units amid a housing crisis and prevent families from falling into homelessness, but also integrate commercial and public spaces to create a healthy and thriving community.”

“In my 40 years working in the housing industry, the Jordan Downs redevelopment effort has been one of the most complex projects to put together,” said HACLA President and CEO Douglas Guthrie. “This achievement is historic and was made possible through an unprecedented collaborative effort of HACLA staff, residents, community stakeholders, City leadership, and all those who understand that investment in Jordan Downs is more than about revitalizing public housing; it is an effort to help reshape Watts and bring new opportunities to help create a thriving community.”

“Jordan Downs is a great example of the transformative results public and private collaboration can have on communities,” said Raul Anaya, Los Angeles Market President, Bank of America. “The Bank’s financing of over $34MM is not only helping to build 115 units of new affordable housing but is also the first step in catalyzing the rebuild of all of Jordan Downs. We are excited that the site will also provide the community with resources like a recreation center, green space and retail. Bank of America has a long legacy in Los Angeles and recognized the significant undertaking of this effort to make Jordan Downs sustainable for generations of Angelinos to come.”

“It really does take a village, and after many years of hard work by our partners and team, we are thrilled to start construction,” said Cynthia A. Parker, President and CEO of BRIDGE Housing. “Large-scale public housing revitalization demonstrates how we can enrich the fabric of communities, make wise use of land, and pair stable homes with the services people need to thrive and grow. We are excited to bring new opportunities to Jordan Downs residents and to Watts.”

Financial partners for Phase 1A include HACLA, the California Department of Housing and Community Development (AHSC), Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee. Phase 1A was designed by SVA Architects (architect of record) and Mithun. The general contractor is Cannon Constructors South.
 

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For more information, visit: The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles: www.hacla.org
BRIDGE Housing: www.bridgehousing.com
The Michaels Organization: www.tmo.com