Despite this difficult economy, affordable housing developments are popping up in cities around the Bay Area.
In August, Greenbelt Alliance endorsed two such projects: Cathedral Gardens in Oakland and Presidio El Camino in Santa Clara. Both developments will provide 100% affordable homes for low- and moderate-income families.
Just minutes from the downtown Oakland BART stations, Cathedral Gardens will be located between 21st and 22nd Streets on the former site of the St. Francis de Sales Cathedral. An existing Rectory building plus two new buildings will house the 100 one-, two-, and three-bedroom homes available to low- and very low-income families.
This family-focused development is close to three schools, a grocery store, shops, and jobs. BART and major AC transit bus lines serve the area, further reducing potential residents’ need for cars.
Cathedral Gardens boasts impressive family-oriented amenities such as community rooms, a workout facility, homework/computer learning center, outdoor BBQ area and a tot lot. In addition, Greenbelt Alliance was pleased that the project has incorporated numerous green features and outdoor open space. We hope that the development will help rejuvenate nearby Begin Park Plaza and further transform this up-and-coming area of Oakland into a vibrant neighborhood.
In Santa Clara, Greenbelt Alliance endorsed Presidio El Camino, a mixed-use development along El Camino Real, which includes 40 affordable homes and retail stores on the ground floor.
Catering to low-income singles and seniors, this community will provide 40 affordable homes close to transportation, shops, the Santa Clara Civic Center, and nearby jobs.
Because of its proximity to the Santa Clara Caltrain station and several VTA bus lines along El Camino, this project fits squarely within the larger goals of the Grand Boulevard Initiative — an effort to revitalize the El Camino Real corridor and encourage development near existing transit stations.
In this tough economic climate, it is increasingly important that low and moderate-income families have access to housing near jobs, shops, and transit to reduce transportation expenses. Greenbelt Alliance is happy to see affordable developments, such as these, cropping up to support diverse, transit-accessible neighborhoods around the Bay Area.
~ Alessandra Davidson