According to Anaheim’s Community Development Department, Rockwood Apartments is “home to Anaheim’s most vulnerable and needy populations.” Rockwood Apartments is a new community by Innovative Housing Opportunities and Jamboree Housing Corporation—with heavy lifting from the City of Anaheim, the Anaheim Housing Authority, and the County of Orange. Soon it will be a beautiful and safe home environment for large families, unstably housed families with children in the Anaheim School District, and households living with mental illness. Rockwood Apartments, named by students at the neighboring Abraham Lincoln Elementary School, honors its residents and community with market rate architectural design and amenities, lush drought tolerant landscaping, and recreation spaces for all ages.
Brief Description of Development
Rockwood Apartments is home to Anaheim's most vulnerable populations. Of the 70 new apartments homes, 48 are set aside for unstably housed residents with children in the Anaheim Unified School District, 15 are set aside for special needs households living with mental illness, the balance are for large families. In addition to market quality architecture, interior design, landscaping and amenities, the property will feature a range of social services from early childhood through adult learning; wealth building to entrepreneurship training. Rockwood is a testament to power of collaboration to serve even the most vulnerable efficiently with dignity and excellence.
This project could not have been financed for this vulnerable population but for the receipt of LIHTCs. The low-income residents, the community and public benefit spaces, and the rents would not have been economically feasible through traditional financing and limited public funds alone. Private equity, though exciting in concept, has not proven to be a reasonable financing source for most affordable communities. As a small and very creative nonprofit developer, we have found that aside from the inconvenience of being extremely competitive, LIHTCs are the only consistent and reliable source for leveraging limited public funds to produce high quality affordable housing and mixed-use housing in this space right now.
Building Specifications and Amenities
Comprehensive resident services, clinical services, and supportive services provided by the Jamboree Housing Corporation and the County Mental Health Services Act funds. These services will be supplemented with Economic Self-Reliance™ programming provided by Innovative Housing Opportunities that utilize a robust network of partnerships to provide personal development including long range goal setting and wealth building classes, academic enrichment and adult education, and job skills and entrepreneurship training that grows with the residents and community as their skills improve. Rockwood also provides its residents with amenities such as: computer lab, resident club house, community room with teaching kitchen, edible garden, tot lot, basketball court, life size chess board, barbecue areas, art light columns, electric vehicle charging station, LEED Silver.
- Total number of units: 70
- Number of LIHTC units: 70
- Square Footage: 120,653
- Rentable Square Footage: 65,121
- 9% LIHTC Equity – $21,879,517
- HUD Project Based Vouchers – 48 vouchers
- City of Anaheim HOME funds – $2.500,000
- City of Anaheim Fee Waiver – $84,770
- City of Anaheim Energy Star Rebate – 105,000
- County of Orange MHSA funds – $1,897.974
- Total Annual Allocation of Federal LIHTCs Awarded: $2,070,000
- Additional Federal Funds: TE Bonds: $44,000,000
- Additional State Funds: HOME: $4,200,000
- LIHTC equity Invested: $19,571,000
- Total Development Costs: $118,118,671
- Qualified Basis: $63,860,000
- Eligible Basis: $63,860,000
Achievement of goals.
This finished community is the third iteration of a project that overcame several obstacles and iterations and at times seemed doomed to fail for reasons beyond our control. The project was initially envisioned as a long-term, comprehensive community revitalization project. However, the challenges of the community proved too much to weather the potential PR challenges to local election, and despite winning the RFP, the project was tabled. It was reborn in a different community as a small acquisition rehabilitation project, but financing through public funds alone proved to be infeasible and the project was again tabled. This final iteration came less than an hour after the announcement of the failure of the acquisition/rehabilitation project and with only 45 days to submit to the second TCAC round. The team had an uphill battle with assembling the several parcels, navigating residential and commercial relocation issues, and community concern about the stigma of affordable housing. In addition, the city of Anaheim expressed a dire need for housing for students in the Anaheim School District that are either homeless or unstably housed. But with a renewed commitment by the development partners, Innovative Housing Opportunities and Jamboree Housing Corporation, and the support of the city of Anaheim, the Housing Authority, and the County of Orange, the new development not only made the TCAC deadline, but received the highest score within the Orange County allocation! The development was able to honor the community’s request for a craftsman-style architecture and incorporate historical elements into the interior design. We were also able to create exterior light columns that could double as both way finders as well as “public art” to passersby at night.