Dec. 16 marked ground breaking on the Calabazas Community Apartments located at 2904 Corvin Dr. in Santa Clara on a 1.08-acre site near Lawrence Station, Calabazas Creek and Lawrence Expressway. The project involves the demolition of a 12,700 square foot light industrial building in order to add 145 units to the City’s housing supply, with 80 of the units reserved for individuals who have experienced homelessness in Santa Clara County. The remainder of the units will be for those with low incomes or disabilities, as the building will be fully ADA accessible.
Developer Abode Services works to end homelessness by providing rental assistance as well as building affordable supportive housing. The agency also provides social services at housing developments. The Calabazas project will have seven dedicated staff members onsite during weekdays for residents as a way to help people remain in their homes. The staff will provide job assistance, financial literacy, computer training, case management and health education.
“We believe everyone should have a home and our mission is to end homelessness,” said Louis Chicoine, Abode Services’ Chief Executive Officer. “And we are proud of the progress we’re making at Calabazas Community Apartments, as the development moves us closer to fulfilling our mission by providing housing and services to the most vulnerable in our communities.”
Chicoine said that the project has the dual purpose of helping to end homelessness as well as to create a healthy environment and community for those who live in the units.
The units will all be 350-square-foot micro studios with kitchenettes and bathrooms. Chicoine said that the small spaces and high density make the project financially feasible. To make up for the compact individual quarters, the project offers ample communal space including meeting spaces, gym, outdoor terraces, a community room, computer lab, storage, bike storage, laundry and parking.
The pet-friendly development will also have property management provided by the John Stewart Company and 24-7 security.
“Abode Services has made great strides in its mission to end homelessness through the Calabazas Community Apartments site,” said Santa Clara Mayor Lisa Gillmor. “This housing development will help rehouse the formerly homeless and bring much-needed affordable housing to Santa Clara.”
The project received $29 million in funding through Measure A, the affordable housing bond approved by county voters in 2016. Santa Clara County’s Office of Supportive Housing will implement a process known as “coordinated entry” to determine need-based placement for the 80 reserved units. The remainder of the units will be available through a lottery process, which is common for affordable housing in the Bay Area. The units are expected to be ready for lease in fall 2021.
“Today’s groundbreaking is about more than simply adding units to our housing stock,” said County of Santa Clara Supervisor Susan Ellenberg at a ground breaking ceremony for the project. “Today’s groundbreaking showcases what can take place when stakeholders come together to tackle some of our toughest challenges.
“It also highlights what happens when all of our county’s cities step up and become part of that solution,” continued Ellenberg. “I am proud of the county’s investment in this and similar projects with Measure A funds and I’m thrilled that more than half of these units will go to members of our community currently experiencing homelessness.”
Abode Services partnered with the City of Santa Clara, County of Santa Clara, Destination: Home, Cisco, Capital One, Enterprise, Housing Trust Silicon Valley and the Santa Clara County Housing Authority to develop Calabazas Community Apartments.