Mayor Eric Garcetti State Dignitaries and Local Leaders Join Abode Communities & LAUSD for Selma Community Housing Grand Opening

November 3, 2016 (Los Angeles, CA) – Mayor Garcetti, Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education President Steve Zimmer, state and local leaders joined affordable housing developer and architect Abode Communities, land owner Los Angeles Unified School District (District) and residents today for the grand opening celebration of Selma Community Housing in Hollywood. This service-enhanced affordable family/workforce residential community features 66 newly constructed homes in Hollywood.

“Those who work tirelessly to teach our children and serve in our communities should not have to worry at night about whether they can afford a roof over their heads,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Our City’s housing crisis has created nearly insurmountable obstacles for full-time employees to remain in the middle class. These 66 units of affordable housing units will help give hard working Angelenos the stability and dignity they so rightly deserve with a place they can call home.”

Built in an effort to improve access to affordable housing, promote employee retention, and balance life and work, Selma prioritizes homes for working families and District staff earning between 30-60% Area Median Income. “We received more than 1,500 rental applications for this residential community, most from families who work within a three-mile radius of the site,” said Robin Hughes, President & CEO of Abode Communities. “Utilizing District land is just one of many innovative solutions where we, as developers, can address the continued need for affordable housing in the City of Los Angeles.”

Sixty-eight percent (68%) of Selma’s homes are leased to District employees, who include substitute teachers, teacher’s assistants, special education teachers and food service workers. Los Angeles Unified School District Board President Steve Zimmer remarked, “We have a role to play in providing affordable housing, and we cannot pretend that the housing crisis does not affect our working families in L.A. Unified. I couldn’t be more proud of our important partnership with Abode Communities and the City of Los Angeles that improves access to affordable housing, promotes employee retention, and provides an example of how we need to look at our property throughout the City to see how we can encourage the expansion of affordable housing in every community.”

Selma Community Housing capitalizes upon its proximity to the Hollywood and Highland Metro Red Line Station through an innovative joint-use program featuring short- and long-term bicycle parking, 67 residential parking spaces, and 50 District parking spaces that serve Selma Elementary School by day and supplement Hollywood’s limited public parking supply by night.

“I am thrilled that Selma Community Housing will be able to offer affordable units to dozens of Angelenos who want to live in the heart of Hollywood,” said Los Angeles City Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell. “The project serves as an example of how public and private partnerships are able to improve our neighborhoods and bring badly needed housing stock to our communities. I want to thank Abode Communities and the Los Angeles Unified School District for making sure this project is realized in the 13th District.”

The development further offers residents an abundance of amenities, including Abode Communities’ complimentary resident services program, Beyond Homes; a computer lab; central courtyard with tot lot; an after-school program multi-purpose room; and a rooftop terrace overlooking Hollywood. Selma is striving to achieve a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) for Homes Platinum rating, furthering deepening Abode Communities’ commitment to healthy, environmentally sustainable homes.

One of the last enforceable commitments of the former CRA/LA, Selma Community Housing was made possible with $32.9 million in permanent financing provided through a variety of private and public funding sources. Union Bank provided more than $29 million in construction and permanent financing, as well as $20 million in private equity syndicated through Low Income Housing Tax Credits.

“Union Bank is proud of our long-standing relationship with Abode Communities and our role as financial partner for this very important public-private partnership,” said Johanna Gullick, Managing Director for Union Bank’s Community Development Finance group. “Selma was a true collaboration with significant commitments from all levels of government – especially the City of Los Angeles, LAUSD and the County of Los Angeles – and would not have been possible without a tremendous nonprofit partner like Abode Communities.”

In addition, Selma benefitted from $4 million residual receipt loan from the California Department of Housing & Community Development Transit-Oriented Development Program; $3.8 million residual receipts loan from the former CRA/LA, administered by the City of Los Angeles Housing & Community Investment Department; and a $650,000 soft loan from the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco. LAUSD is a major underwriter in the project, providing a 66-year ground-lease contribution valued at $1.9 million.