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Community Corp. Breaks Ground on Its First Prefab Development


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By Jorge Casuso

April 26, 2024 -- Community Corp. broke ground Friday on its first affordable housing development for vulnerable youth that is also its first pre-fabricated building.

The four-story, 11,332-square-foot building on an in-fill site at 1342 Berkeley Street will offer 13 one-bedroom units of 100 percent affordable housing for low-income families and transition-aged youth.

Berkeley Station rendering
Berkeley Station (Renderings courtesy Brooks + Scarpa)

“This is a great example of the type of housing that needs to be built to help alleviate Santa Monica’s affordable housing crisis,” said Tara Barauskas, executive director of Community Corp., Santa Monica's largest affordable housing provider.

The building, designed by the local architecture firm Brooks + Scarpa, will be built by Plant Prefab at the company's new high-tech factory in Tejon Ranch.

The company will use "techniques that offer a more sustainable and time and cost-efficient way to create affordable, temporary, and transitional housing,” said Steve Glenn, Plant Prefab's founder and CEO.

Berkeley Station was designed to meet LEED Gold standards and will include solar panels and Energy Star appliances, as well as a community garden and a rooftop deck.

Funded in large part part with a $9.7 million construction and permanent loan commitment from the City, the project includes five units occupied by households earning no more than 60 percent of Los Angeles County area median income (AMI), according to a June 2022 letter from the City.

The other eight units are targeted for youth between the ages of 18 and 24 earning no more than thirty percent of the County's AMI, according to the letter, which lists the conditions of the loan.

Berkeley Station

Friday's groundbreaking ceremony was attended by State Sen. Ben Allen and Assemblymember Rick Chavez Zbur, who both represent the City; Mayor Phil Brock and several City Councilmembers.

“Santa Monica continues to be a leader in finding innovative, sustainable, and compassionate ways to address the homelessness and housing crisis,” Brock said.

“It is so important that our transition-age youth and low-income families have a safe and stable place to live, and Berkeley Station will provide these households with that secure foundation so they can thrive.”

Sen. Allen called Berkeley Station “a model of the type of affordable housing we need to be building across California.”

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