JV Lands $37M Loan for Affordable Los Angeles Redevelopment

The 92-unit structure is the third phase of a $1 billion project that brings new life to a 700-unit public housing community dating from 1955.
Jordan Downs. mage courtesy of FSY Architects
Jordan Downs. Image courtesy of FSY Architects

A partnership of the City of Los Angeles’ Housing Authority, The Michaels Organization and BRIDGE Housing has received $37.3 million in financing for the third phase of Jordan Downs in Los Angeles. Dubbed Phase S3, the project is set to bring 92 affordable housing units to the redevelopment of a 700-unit public housing community dating from 1955. CIT Bank, the subsidiary of CIT Group, provided the loan. 

Michaels and BRIDGE broke ground on the first phase of the $1 billion project in 2017. The development team also includes Walton Construction as general contractor and FSY Architects as design lead and architect of record. The 70-acre project is slated for an early 2022 completion.

Situated at 9800 Grape St. in the Watts neighborhood, Phase S3 will include one- to four‐bedroom units, which will be available to households earning between 30 and 80 percent of the area’s median income. Of the total, 17 apartments will be set aside for residents with physical disabilities and hearing or visual impairments. The development aims for a LEED Gold certification.

The property is 8 miles south of downtown Los Angeles, near Watts Towers Arts Center and Jordan Downs Recreation Center. The site is close to interstates 105 and 110, with Martin Luther King Jr. Community Hospital located 2 miles south.

A joint financial effort

In April, Jordan Downs Phase S3 also received a $35 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development through the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative. The grant includes $5 million for providing social services to Jordan Downs residents. According to Bisnow, the HUD funds awarded for the whole project total $130 million.

In March, Berkadia provided $33 million in equity to the project, by purchasing 9 percent federal low-income housing tax credits. Financing for Phase S3 also includes permanent loans through Freddie Mac, the State of California’s Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities program and the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles. Jordan Downs Phase S3 will also incorporate rental subsidies through project-based Section 8 contracts and the Rental Assistance Demonstration program. 

The State of California supplied discounted transit passes for residents, also enabling a job training partnership to help leverage the impact of the project for neighborhood career advancement.