Having recently moved back into her newly renovated unit at San Diego Square, Isara Garrett said she had only one word for the officials who have helped keep her downtown home affordable.
“That word is grateful,” said Garrett, 71. “I am so grateful for my brand-new apartment. My little dog Snoopy and I love living here.”
Garrett and 153 other seniors were displaced for about three weeks while top-to-bottom renovations were made to the 37-year-old San Diego Square building. She was among the guests at a ceremonial ribbon-cutting Monday to reopen the building.
Besides having newly painted units and other amenities, residents of San Diego Square have the peace of mind that they may never have to move out because of a rent increase. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development also has recently extended by 20 years its rental assistance program that has provided vouchers for San Diego Square residents since the building opened in 1979.
There soon will be about 500 affordable units within a block of San Diego Square. Those include 72 at the Hotel Churchill, 25 of which will be units of supportive housing through the Mental Health Services Act Housing (MHSA) program as well as supportive housing for veterans, and 250 at Celadon at 9th and Broadway, including 25 supportive housing units through MHSA and an additional 63 units of supportive housing with PACE services. CSH has been a partner in all three developments
At San Diego Square, 122 units are reserved for people at least 62 years old with annual incomes of about $40,800 for a two-person household, or 60 percent or less than the area’s median income.
Thirty-two units are reserved for seniors whose income is $34,000 a year, or 50 percent or less than the area median income.