LAUSD building affordable housing for employees

Independent Staff Report

HOLLYWOOD — The Los Angeles Unified School District is helping to ease the affordable housing crisis here by building an apartment complex for district employees.

The Selma Community Workforce Housing Project is under construction at the corner of Cherokee and Selma avenues.

The four-story, 66-unit complex, built by Adobe Communities, a nonprofit housing developer, is intended for LAUSD employees who fall into a designated economic category. The project, scheduled for completion in early fall 2016, is part of the district’s effort to attract and retain employees who want to live near work but can’t afford to pay for housing costs.

A recent report from the California Housing Partnership said the lowest-income households statewide spend two out of every three dollars of income on housing. That leaves little money for food, utilities and other expenses.

The study also found that 1.5 million low-income households in the Southland cannot find housing they can afford. The problem has worsened as rents rise and incomes stall, officials said.

For instance, the annual media rent since 2000 has climbed 21 percent statewide since 2000, while the typical renter has seen income drop 8 percent.

Selma is the second of three planned LAUSD workforce housing projects, all of which were approved several years ago by the school board. Last month, the district celebrated the grand opening of the Sage Park Apartments on the north side of the Gardena Senior High School campus.

That complex features 90 affordable one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments for families. Sixty two of the apartments have been rented by district employees.

The third, Norwood Learning Village, is expected to be completed late next year. The 29-unit complex is located near USC.


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