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Affordable Housing Projects In Limbo Gets $5 Million Boost From Public-Private Partnership

By Ed Fuentes
Published: Tuesday, April 06, 2010, at 07:21PM
New Genesis Groundbreaking Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Ground was broken last week on the New Genesis, which will provide supportive housing on Main street.

The frozen credit markets and ongoing state and city budget woes have made life hard for developers, including those looking to build affordable housing. To fight that, the city and private sector joined together today to announce the Los Angeles Supportive Housing Recovery Initiative, which will provide $5.2 million to projects that just need a little extra push to get out of the ground.

The initiative was announced by Councilwoman Jan Perry, who spoke before a panel at the Japanese American National Museum that included Bill Pitkin of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Dalila Sotelo from the Community Redevelopment Agency, Patrick Murcia of Fannie Mae, and Neil McGuffin of the Corporation for Supportive Housing. The Hilton Foundation provided $4 million of the initiative's funding.

Also on the panel was Antonio Manning, JPMorgan Chase & Co, who said that some of the funding came via a small surplus from a previous merger with Washington Mutual. "We had it, so let's use it to grow communities," he said.

Funding will go to afforable housing projects slated within the City of Los Angeles.

While the investment is a higher risk, projects needing a final push toward groundbreaking can prove to save money in the long run, said Pitkin. "We are hoping in two or three years there will progress," he said. "In that time frame some may fail. We want to do our best to make sure some will go ahead. It's better in the long run than starting over."


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