PASADENA, Calif. – City officials, community leaders and project partners today celebrated the Grand Opening of Marv’s Place, the only permanent supportive housing program in the Pasadena area available to formerly homeless families.
Recently honored as Supportive Housing Project of the Year by the Southern California Association of Non-Profit Housing, Marv’s Place features 20 homes and offers onsite supportive services that include case management, career development, money management and substance abuse assistance.
“It is, in every sense, a safe haven, where formerly homeless families find the support they need to be successful and transform their lives,” said Ciriaco “Cid” Pinedo, President of the Hope through Housing Foundation and Senior Vice President for National Community Renaissance (National CORE), the project’s nonprofit owner and developer.
Marv’s Place represents a bold step forward in addressing the housing affordability crisis that keeps many homeless individuals and families from rebuilding their lives. At one point, Pasadena’s homeless population spiked to more than 1,200, including well over 100 children. Today, those numbers are less than half of that as a result of collaborative efforts in the city, but the need to provide stable housing and supportive services has only grown.
In envisioning and developing Marv’s Place, a partnership was forged between National CORE, one of the nation’s largest nonprofit community builders, and Union Station Homeless Services, a nonprofit organization with more than 40 years of experience in providing homeless men, women and children with supportive care. Construction costs for the project were $12.2 million, with funding from a combination of low-income housing tax credits and city of Pasadena and Los Angeles County housing funds. In addition, seven of the 20 units were set aside for families with children ages 5 and under through funding from First 5 LA, which had never before allocated dollars specifically for housing. First 5 LA also awarded Marc’s Place a $200,000 grant over three years for supportive services.
“Marv’s Place is a model effort on a number of levels,” said Steve PonTell, President and Chief Executive Officer of National CORE. “It is the first affordable housing development specifically designed for formerly homeless families in the City of Pasadena, a critical component of the city’s efforts to help individuals and families transition from homelessness, and a great example of collective impact making a difference.”
In addition to National CORE, Union Station, First 5 LA and the City of Pasadena, partners include the County of Los Angeles Community Development Commission, JP Morgan Chase & Co., FHLBank San Francisco, the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee, Westport Construction, Onyx Architects, Raymond James Tax Credit Funds Inc. and DCI Engineering Inc.
The community is designed in an elegant Mediterranean style, with a central recreational courtyard and the look and feel of a high-end development. The building itself is state of the art, recently earning Platinum LEED certification from the U.S Green Building Council for energy and environmental efficiency. The main entrance has direct access to public streets and sidewalks to public transit stops. All units are either accessible or adaptable, and are fully furnished to help ease a family’s transition.
“Marv’s Place is the perfect combination of high quality affordable housing paired with strong social services to offer hope and opportunities to formerly homeless individuals who often are not given a chance for a better life,” PonTell said.
About the Hope through Housing Foundation and National CORE
National Community Renaissance, based in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., is one of the nation’s largest nonprofit developers of affordable housing. National CORE manages nearly 9,000 affordable, senior and market-rate units in California, Arkansas, Texas and Florida. For more information on both organizations, please visit www.nationalcore.org. The Hope through Housing Foundation, based in Rancho Cucamonga, has provided more than 2 million hours in supportive services to enhance quality of life over the past two decades, including preschool, afterschool, senior wellness and upward mobility programs.