Thursday, July 3, 2014

New grants will drive innovative affordable housing in San Diego


Edward Lopez, LISC San Diego
(619) 528-9058 or

LISC San Diego, JPMorgan Chase join forces to support high-impact development plans

SAN DIEGO (July 2, 2014) – The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) is helping expand the amount of good rental housing available to low-income families with grants to two of San Diego’s top nonprofits working to revitalize troubled communities.

City Heights Community Development Corporation (CDC) and Community HousingWorks will split $100,000 in early action funding, having been selected through a competitive process that considered the long-term implications of affordable housing proposals.  The grants are unique because they both help get construction and rehab efforts off the ground for particular projects and fund development models that can be replicated by others working to address the city’s growing housing needs.

The grants are part of national funding from JPMorgan Chase to help make sure low-income families can find safe, decent homes within their means.  San Diego is a priority market for the grant program.

"Expanding access to affordable housing isn't just the right thing to do – it is a part of a smart, effective strategy for improving entire communities," said Alice Carr, West Regional Manager for Chase Community Development Banking. "LISC has been promoting that approach for decades and we are proud to support their efforts to expand this work throughout San Diego," added Carr.

City Heights CDC, for instance, will acquire and rehab a “Huffman 6-Pack”—a catch-all term for the small, 1970s-era housing developments known primarily for their poor design and deteriorating quality. There are thousands of such apartments in low-income neighborhoods across San Diego.  City Heights CDC is building an efficient rehab model that will make it easier for developers all across the city to improve the quality of these properties and, in the process, make the surrounding neighborhoods better places to live.

“The ‘Huffman’ multifamily properties in City Heights--with their two-story monolithic façades and expansive concrete parking in front--stand in ugly contrast to the attractive craftsman houses that line our streets,” said Kenneth Grimes, executive director at City Heights CDC.  “We are developing a plan to turn these apartments into quality homes and blend them into the surrounding architecture—all as part of our larger efforts to revitalize our neighborhood,” he said.

Community HousingWorks (CHW) is taking a different tack with its grant, using it to build 138 affordable apartments for seniors as part of a new complex that offers on-site health services for residents. The project is part of an intergenerational master-planned community in Oceanside and will help CHW create a model to integrate housing and health care in new development efforts.

“This grant will help us provide much needed housing and supportive services for seniors in our community,” said Sue Reynolds, CEO of CHW.  “In fact, as part of our overall development, the project will specifically provide 27 homes for formerly homeless or disabled veterans. The need for those veterans’ homes is particularly great here in San Diego County.”

Edward Lopez, LISC’s executive director in San Diego, pointed to the innovative approach both City Heights and CHW have taken.  “This funding does more than support one or two specific projects.  It is helping these organizations create a set of best practices that will help inform and accelerate other efforts to address severe affordable housing needs in San Diego County,” he said.

This funding is the latest in a long partnership between JPMorgan Chase and LISC. To date, the bank and its foundation have worked with LISC to deliver $53 million in grants, $110 million in loans and $2 billion in tax credit equity for affordable rental housing and commercial development nationwide.

"Affordable housing is the heart of our Building Sustainable Communities work to improve the quality of life in neighborhoods all across the country," noted Larry Oaks, LISC’s national vice president of housing. "We share JPMorgan Chase’s goal to make sure families can raise their children in safe, decent homes while we help boost the economies of disadvantaged neighborhoods. This grant program will have a significant impact on how well people live and what opportunities they have in the future.”

About LISC
LISC, the Local Initiatives Support Corporation, combines corporate, government and philanthropic resources to help nonprofit community development corporations revitalize distressed neighborhoods. Since 1980, LISC has invested $13.8 billion to build or rehab 313,400 affordable homes and apartments and develop 51 million square feet of retail, community and educational space. For more, visit

In San Diego, LISC has invested $212 million to support and rebuild communities throughout the region. These investments leveraged another $843 million to build and rehab nearly 6,000 homes affordable homes and one million square feet of commercial, retail and community space in low-income neighborhoods. For more, visit

About JPMorgan Chase
JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.5 trillion and operations worldwide. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of consumers in the United States and many of the world's most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at


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