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Proposed Downtown Housing Development for the Homeless Gets $2 Million
 

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By Lookout Staff

March 15, 2022 -- A proposed Downtown housing development for homeless individuals at the site of Parking Structure 3 received $2 million under a massive federal spending bill signed into law Tuesday.

The Santa Monica development is one of five projects totaling $5.85 million in Congressman Ted Lieu's district that target the homeless under the $1.5 trillion bill signed by President Joe Biden.

“This funding will go directly toward building housing and providing support for those experiencing homelessness in our district," Lieu said of the Santa Monica project.

"I will continue to fight for our district in Congress to ensure we receive the federal funding we need to tackle this persistent challenge.”

The funding was announced as the City's contractor, AMPCO Inc., begins demolishing Parking Structure 3 at 1320 4th Street, which was built in 1966 ("Parking Structure 3's Long and Winding Road to Demolition," March 4, 2022).

The City was given the final go-ahead on March 2 when a Court of Appeals declined to take up the case ("Appeals Court Won't Hear Parking Structure Case, Paving Way for Demolition," March 3, 2022).

City officials expect the demolition to be completed in the fall, and the City Council voted in January to enter into an exclusive negotiating agreement with EAH, Inc. to build the housing on the City owned parcel.

The developer was selected based "on the team’s depth of experience in the areas of permanent supportive housing, larger developments, supportive services, and property management," City officials said.

Under EAH's proposal, the developer would build and manage the property and "all residents would be supported with services to ensure housing retention and good-neighbor actions," City officials said.

In awarding the contract, the Council directed staff and the development team "to work collaboratively on ways to move the affordable housing forward as quickly as possible."

On Tuesday, City officials lauded the federal funding for the Downtown housing project.

"The allocation toward Santa Monica’s project to produce affordable housing to alleviate the region’s homelessness crisis represents the single largest share of these funds," City officials said.

"This welcome receipt of federal funds comes as demolition work on Parking Structure 3 begins this week."

Lieu also pushed for funding for four other projects in his District that include $1.5 million for the City of LA's Crisis and Incident Response through Community-Led Engagement (CIRCLE).

The pilot program will target "non-emergency calls to 911 involving a person experiencing a mental health crisis and/or homelessness," according to Lieu's office.

Other funding for projects targeting the homeless includes $1 million for the City of Torrance’s Homelessness Response Project, $749,650 to renovate Arnold Avenue on the West Los Angeles VA Medical Center Campus and $600,000 for UCLA’s Mobile Healthcare Program.

“The homelessness crisis in America is a national disgrace," Lieu said in a statement Tuesday. "We must do more to support individuals and families experiencing homelessness.

"I’m pleased that the local homelessness projects I advocated for have been included in the FY 2022 government spending package.”

Mayor Sue Himmelrich praised Lieu's efforts.

“We continue to have the great fortune of working with Rep. Lieu who has steadfastly advocated for much-needed local funds to support priority projects like the conversion of Parking Structure 3 to affordable housing,” said Mayor Sue Himmelrich.

“We were thrilled to be included in the appropriations process and with the signing of the bill by President Biden, we are grateful for this welcome federal support.”


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