Affirmed Housing Breaks Ground on Orange County Affordable Project

Della Rosa in Orange County, Calif., will serve as permanent supportive housing for the chronically homeless and families earning up to 50 percent of the area median income.
Della Rosa. Rendering courtesy of Affirmed Housing

Affirmed Housing has broken ground on Della Rosa, a new 50-unit housing community designed to address chronic homelessness and the needs of low-income households in Orange County.

The $17.9 million Della Rosa will offer a quartet of two- and three-story buildings on a .66-acre parcel along north-south Beach Boulevard in Westminster, Calif. Included will be 25 studio units designated as permanent supportive housing units serving individuals who are chronically homeless. Another 25 one-and two-bedroom residences will be set aside for small families earning up to 50 percent of the area median income. Designed by architectural firm Dahlin Group, each building features second-floor setbacks with distinctively placed design features.  

Orange County in particular, has a regional homelessness crisis,” Affirmed Housing Senior Project Manager Mellody Lock told Multi-Housing News. “The timing couldn’t be more perfect for Affirmed Housing to develop permanent supportive housing and affordable housing for the City of Westminster. Additionally, the building previously on site was an eyesore to the community for the past 40-plus years. The community wanted that highly visible stretch of Beach Boulevard to be improved. Affirmed worked with the city’s Planning Department to include architectural features that carried from the Chamber of Commerce a few blocks away. That helped tie Della Rosa into the community visually, and to become an asset that the community can be proud of.”    

Design challenges 

The characteristics of the site attributed to many design challenges, as it is long and narrow along the busy corridor of Beach Boulevard,” Lock added. “Affirmed is fortunate to have an experienced team of designers to help plot four new buildings that fit within the site constraints. The city’s Planning Division was instrumental in the preliminary design process, which is super helpful in expediting new permanent supportive housing.

“The team approach, and listening to all ideas, is always the best solution. It sounds simple and obvious, but to really create an environment of collaboration is not easy—but [is] a better process in the long term.” 

Funding partners include the City of Westminster, County of Orange, U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corporation, U.S. Bank, and the California Community Reinvestment Corp. (CCRC). Currently compiling a wait list of prospective residents, Della Rosa is expected to welcome first residents in the fall of 2020.

Affirmed is active in a number of California communities creating affordable housing. Earlier this month, the company broke ground on an 86-unit affordable housing project in downtown San Diego, dubbed The Link.