May 29, 2012
It is recommended that the City Council adopt a resolution approving a funding commitment of up to $500,000 of funding from the federal HOME Investments Partnership Program (HOME) to First Community Housing (FCH) for a predevelopment loan for the planned 75 unit Japantown Seniors Apartments, an affordable rental development to be located on the former City Corporation Yard Parking Lot site located at 675 N. Sixth Street.
As part of the FY 2009-10 Budget, the City Council approved the Housing Department’s acquisition of the former City Corporation Parking Lot for the purpose of affordable housing development. In April 2009, the site was acquired by the Housing Department with funds from the Low and Moderate Income Housing Funds from the General Services Department for the appraised value of $2,200,000.
The site is a half acre parcel located in the Japantown neighborhood just south of an existing senior residential development and across the street from the former City Corporation Yard. The site and the nearby City Corporation Yard have a long history of development planning that dates back to the City Council’s decision to relocate the City Corporation Yard and seek proposals for redevelopment of these sites. In 2006, FCH was selected as part of a development team with the Olsen Company and again with Williams & Dame, for development of the inclusionary housing portion of a mixed use development containing residential, commercial, and public amenities on the site and former City Corporation Yard site. After Williams & Dame dropped out as developer in 2008 due to the weak for-sale market, FCH decided to pursue funding of the affordable senior apartment project on the site and has submitted updated project information to the Housing Department.
On June 16, 2010, FCH obtained a Planned Development Permit, file number PD08-015, for a 75 unit multifamily project. On February 29, 2012 the PD Permit was amended to enable all requirements to be satisfied not later than June 14, 2014, including the treatment of historic Japanese and Chinese artifacts if these are discovered on the site.
On February 8, 2011, the City Council adopted a resolution authorizing the Director of Housing to enter into an Exclusive Negotiation Agreement (ENA) to allow for exclusive negotiations regarding a potential ground lease of the site from the City to FCH. At this time, there is not an executed ENA between the City and FCH, however the provisions authorized for the ENA will be incorporated into the predevelopment loan documents.
On October 27, 2011, the Housing Department recertified FCH’s status as a Community Housing Developer Organization (CHDO). FCH has been a certified CHDO for the City of San Jos6 for several years, and their status is reviewed annually per HUD requirements. A CHDO is a non-profit housing developer that uses city HOME funds to develop affordable housing. These HOME funds can be used in the pre-development or construction phases of a project.
The City determined that the project will have no significant impact on the human environment and that therefore an Environmental Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act.
Certification Status: Full Certification awarded April 4, 2013
Developer: First Community Housing
Location: 685 North Sixth St., San Jose, CA
Description: Japantown Senior Apartments is a 75-unit apartment development to be constructed on a half-acre infill site in the Japantown neighborhood of San Jose. The building will serve low-income seniors earning 30-60% of the area median income. Thirty of the units will be reserved for seniors living with chronic illnesses or developmental disabilities. Supportive services will be available. The development will offer free transit passes to all residents for the life of the project.