BROADWAY — City Hall dedicated a new affordable housing complex here last week, adding 20 units for low income senior citizens to Santa Monica’s housing stock.

The project, located at 1458 14th St. and completed in December, is the first affordable housing complex to open in the city in about a year, said Jim Kemper, City Hall’s housing administrator.

The project is aimed at seniors who earn 60 percent of the median income, which amounts to about $38,000 for a couple and $33,300 for an individual.

City Hall invested nearly $5.8 million in the $11.4 million project. About $3.4 million came form the federal stimulus bill and the rest came from a nearly $1 million bank loan and federal and state housing programs.

“The city is what makes projects like this happen,” Kemper said.

Federal low income tax credits usually provide about half the funding for affordable housing projects, Kemper said, but since the recession the market for the credits has all but disappeared. Because of the slumping real estate market few developers are making profits, so there’s little demand for the credits.

Funding under the federal stimulus bill, he said, allowed many affordable housing projects to move forward without financing from the credits.

Dedicated on Feb. 25, Kemper said tenants began moving into the 14th Street building in January. The location, he said, is ideal for senior citizens because of its proximity to Santa Monica Boulevard, which is a major corridor for bus lines, and to grocery stores and medical buildings.

“What’s great about it is it’s got so many amenities within walking distance of it, which is great not only in general but especially for seniors,” he said.

An orthodontist’s office is expected to occupy the first-floor.

nickt@www.smdp.com

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