by Photo courtesy of San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency

San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency awards an additional $20 million in federal and state funding for five housing projects which offer 375 units to eligible residents. 

The projects that received awards include Aviara East in Carlsbad, Union Tower in National City, Santa Fe Senior Village in Vista, COMM 22 in Logan Heights, and Mariposa II in San Marcos. 

The Santa Fe Senior Village in Vista is the only one out of the five projects that will serve low-income seniors, homeless seniors, and homeless senior veterans. It will receive $9.375 million for 54 units. 

The remaining projects will serve low-income families. In the southern region of the county, COMM 22 Addition in Logan Heights will receive $4 million for 61 units, and Union Tower in National City will receive $3.5 million for the construction of 94 units. 

In North County, Mariposa II in San Marcos will receive $2.6 million for 96 units, and Aviara East in Carlsbad, $1.3 million for 70 units. 

According to the county, these projects are a result of the county’s work with various federal and state initiatives, including HOME Investment Partners, the American Rescue Plan Program, the housing innovative housing trust fund, and the No Place Like Home program. 

These new allocations are in addition to the previous round of funding announced in March in Vista, Ramona, Clairemont, and San Ysidro. County officials say the funding totals more than $43 million and is intended to allow the county to support the addition of nearly 800 new affordable housing units throughout the region.

The risk of homelessness was on the rise with the COVID-19 pandemic as the American economy shut down. San Diego County invested over $27 million into an Emergency Rental Assistance Program to help renters financially impacted by the pandemic stay in their homes, but the issue of housing dated before the pandemic. 

A poll conducted by UC Berkley’s Institute of Governmental Studies found that many Californians may have felt overwhelmed by the state’s high cost of living. The poll was answered among 8,676 Californians, and 872 San Diegans. 

Of that population, 34 percent of San Diegans believed that the state should address the issue of housing affordability, which remained at the top of voter concerns. Homelessness ranked at 27 percent.  

As reported in the San Diego County’s Housing Accessibility and affordability 2020-21 report, The county launched the Innovative Housing Initiative in 2017, and in five years, with the combination of existing resources, it has created more than 2,000 affordable housing units. 

“Many area residents are priced out of the local market due to the rising cost of living,'' said David Estrella, director of HHSA's Housing and Community Development Services. “These funds will secure a stable place to live for some of the most vulnerable San Diegans.''

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