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Simpson Housing breaks ground on affordable residences downtown

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Long Beach-based Simpson Housing Solutions LLC joined with San Diego officials in breaking ground on a new, 42-unit affordable multifamily apartment community in the heart of the city's downtown redevelopment area.

Gateway Family Apartments will include 2-bedroom as well as hard to find 3-bedroom units when it opens next year, according to Michael Costa, president of SHS. All apartments will be set aside for households earning a maximum of 30 percent to 60 percent of the area median income for San Diego County as published by the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development.

"This community will contribute to the ongoing revitalization of the Barrio Logan neigh-borhood, located near Petco Park, while also helping preserve the areas appearance and culture," Costa said. "It will also help address the severe shortage of affordable housing for working families in high-cost cities like San Diego," he added.

The groundbreaking was attended by San Diego City Councilmember Ben Hueso; members of the city's Redevelopment Agency, Centre City Development Corporation, the San Diego Housing Commission, and Rachael Ortiz, Executive Director of Barrio Station, a community-based nonprofit that assists disadvantaged, high-risk youth.

Located at 1605 Logan Avenue (at 16th Street), Gateway Family Apartments will feature four stories built over a two-level underground garage as well as a separate community building with a clubhouse, computer learning center and other amenities. The project will also feature BBQ areas and a tot lot. It is located near public transit, schools, child care, shopping and recreational facilities.

The 17 2-bedroom and 25 large 3-bedroom units will feature interior entrances, plush carpeting, built-in kitchen appliances, cable TV hook-ups and free high-speed internet service.

Three-bedroom apartments are in particularly short supply for growing families, Costa noted. "Most of the larger units in the area are located in older buildings, with far fewer amenities than this community will offer," he said, noting that apartments at Gateway will range from 860 to a generous 1,100 square feet. Monthly rents have not yet been determined, but will be well below prevailing market-rate rents in the area.

Costa also reported that the City of San Diego and its redevelopment agency have been instrumental in making the project possible, acquiring the site and providing $3.6 million in financing. Gateway Family Apartments also received an allocation of $8.7 million in federal low-income housing tax credits.

Construction is already under way and is scheduled to be completed next summer. SHS will announce a toll-free telephone number for those wishing to be placed on an interest list, or learn more about qualifying for residency, at a later date.

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