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Photos: Affordable Housing Complex Opens on Cedar Street

The 14-unit building is a passport to a new life for its residents.

As part of San Mateo County’s Affordable Housing Week, Redwood City and county officials unveiled the newest affordable housing in the community: the Cedar Street Apartments.

The brand new 14-unit building almost sparkled with its new coat of paint and blindingly white banisters. Community members and the new residents of 104 Cedar Street attended the ribbon cutting ceremony.

Future resident Brigitte Ohms gave a nearly tearful thanks to the many people who helped find “not a new house, but a home.”

“I was released from prison and I was homeless,” Ohms said. “But this is the end of my struggle and now I can live life.”

Resident Veronica Stephens also saw this as a new beginning without an end in sight, “Now I get to retire from my struggle.”

The 14 studio units have already been offered to 14 adults with mental illnesses. On-site supportive services will focus on educational and vocational opportunities and activities.

Vice Mayor Jeff Gee welcomed the newest residents to their home, and used the Cedar apartments of an illustration of what collaborative efforts between different agencies and bodies could produce.

Creating more affordable housing has been a priority of the city, as it provides in the entire San Mateo County.

Duane Bay, the director of the county’s Department of Housing used the unveiling to highlight the need to continue supporting these types of projects. He said persistence in applying for federal grants from the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) department was crucial.

“We all pay taxes in different ways,” Bay said. “But this is the best thing that the public can put its money to.”

Correction: The original article listing Redwood City as having 25 percent of the county's affordable housing units.

 

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Joshua Hugg May 11, 2012 at 11:50 PM
No problem. There are several cities that offer below market rate (BMR) ownership programs and first time home-buyer (FTHB) programs too. Your best bet is to check the housing department webpages of the larger cities like San Mateo: http://www.cityofsanmateo.org/index.aspx?NID=525. They have specified eligibility criteria that go beyond income (credit rating, etc.).
Aaron May 12, 2012 at 01:46 PM
I would like to see more affordable housing in Redwood City ... It's important to take care of people with a criminal history and is also important to take care of people with mental illness (increasingly more often the same people) Providing investment properties to the 1%, who now profit from the government because their tenants collect SSI or live on fixed income is not a solution... it only alleviates 14 beds in the county jail. We need affordable housing that people like Police, Fire Fighters, Teachers, and Social Workers can afford to buy, live, and work in Redwood City. It's a good start though. As far as Saltworks is concerned, the city should make a conscious decision to designate the land for what it is ... not land ... bay. after a century of corporate stewardship, these marshes are no longer able to profitably produce anything. They should be de-colonised and restored to the state of their existence before the land was stolen from the Miwok Indians ... who also used to harvest salt there, but in a sustainable manner. and Cargill should pay for it.
Tam Wilso February 12, 2013 at 12:33 AM
Sadly all these highly paid people are getting the help!!! And others have to commute for hours to have a place to live and a job. What about single mothers, that gross only about 22,000 a year..someone who would take any job to feed their children?? We just don't exist unlike the police and fire fighters that gross 100,000 or more!!!
Aaron February 12, 2013 at 12:41 AM
ok, tam... you are posting here, but why? You want to have a conversation with the folks in this thread or something? Was that you trying to talk at me sideways Roger?
Joshua Hugg February 12, 2013 at 01:10 AM
Hi Tam, Individual salaries aside, there are many reasons why everyone who works or grew up here deserves to have an opportunity to live here. No one can be expected to have a viable quality of life if they are expected to endure long commutes and pay a significant portion of their paycheck toward housing + transportation costs. The bottom line is that we need to plan for and then create more housing in locations that can take advantage of transportation options and amenities for ALL levels of income.

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