Los Angeles earmarks $37M for affordable housing construction

Dive Brief:

  • The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has earmarked more than $37 million to finance affordable housing in the city, with $18 million reserved as loans for five affordable housing projects in South Los Angeles, according to Curbed Los Angeles.

  • The South Los Angeles projects will include a combined total of 304 units for homeless individuals and tenants with disabilities.

  • The board also allocated $19 million from its current budget to fund affordable housing projects on a rolling basis, with eight additional schemes currently under consideration. 

Dive Insight:

Like many large U.S. cities, Los Angeles is struggling to bulk up its affordable housing stock. The dearth of affordable homes in the U.S. is most acute on the West Coast, with California’s Department of Housing and Community Development reporting that the state’s housing production fell more than 100,000 new homes short of demand annually over the last 10 years.

Three cities in the state — Santa Cruz, Santa Barbara and San Jose — were also recently named among the top 10 least-affordable housing markets globally by Demographia.

Last month, Los Angeles City Controller Ron Galperin said the city’s density bonus program, which allows developers to build larger than code in exchange for providing more affordable housing, is failing to provide enough affordable properties to keep up with demand.

In a bid to bridge the gap, state officials are looking at a number of proposals, including a plan put forth in December that would see Californians who own a second home lose their ability to deduct interest on that mortgage from their state taxes.

The recent pickup in high-end residential and commercial building activity in Los Angeles comes as developers race the clock on a March ballot vote that could limit zoning flexibility for large-scale, mixed-use developments.

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Filed Under: Residential Building Economy Legal/Regulation