FULLERTON, CA - Less than a year after breaking ground, Jamboree Housing Corporation and the City of Fullerton today announced the grand opening of Compass Rose. This unique, long-term partnership between Jamboree and the City of Fullerton helped execute the City’s redevelopment plan, to bring more affordable housing and supportive services to the blighted and overcrowded Richman Park area.
Over the last 10 years, the City of Fullerton and the former Fullerton Redevelopment Agency invested more than $22.7 million to buy properties in the centrally-located Richman Park neighborhood, an area that had suffered from high poverty and crime rates. More than 30 properties were purchased, with some being developed as affordable for-sale homes. Compass Rose is the affordable rental component of the city’s master plan and, upon the request of then Fullerton Mayor, now Fourth District Orange County Supervisor, Doug Chaffee, the majority of the apartments are set aside for residents who earn less than 40% of the area median income.
“I believe that safe and secure affordable housing is a basic human need and essential to providing for a decent quality of life. In my capacity as Supervisor, I will continue to advocate for affordable housing for the residents of Orange County. As we continue to work towards this goal, I’m proud to stand by Jamboree and look forward to building more projects like Compass Rose,” said Chaffee.
The 1.76-acre site, comprised of five scattered sites, has now evolved into a 46-unit affordable apartment complex, with an expansive community service center as the focal point of the development. The Compass Rose community center features approximately 2,800 square feet of community space that houses flexible indoor/outdoor recreational space, onsite management offices, kitchen facilities, and space where free, onsite services will be provided to residents and the surrounding Richman Park community. Outdoor amenities include barbecue/dining areas, a tot lot, fitness areas, and landscaped community spaces for outdoor recreation. Each residential building features laundry facilities, most apartments have a garage, and on-grade parking is available for guests.
Jesus Silva, current Mayor of Fullerton, said that quality affordable housing, like Compass Rose, can truly revitalize a community. “Thank you, Jamboree, city staff and all our great partners for help in transforming our city one neighborhood at a time. Your commitment to the families of Compass Rose will ignite the spark of possibilities that will allow them to move forward with love and dignity.”
Laura Archuleta, Jamboree President and CEO, said that developers of affordable housing today have had to evolve the nature of their work since the dissolution of redevelopment agencies.
“Having the opportunity to work with the City of Fullerton in executing the last phase of their redevelopment vision for the Richman Park neighborhood has been a unique and rewarding experience,” she said. “Seeing the commitment of the City to finish what they began more than 10 years ago shows that affordable housing is still possible in a post-redevelopment world when the political will of a city is present.”
Archuleta pointed out that Compass Rose creates not only quality affordable housing for families but is a platform to expand community services that benefit the surrounding neighborhood and residents. This is accomplished through Jamboree’s partnership with the California State University Fullerton Center for Healthy Neighborhoods, St. Jude Neighborhood Health Center, and Richman Connect who are working together with Jamboree to expand services, programs, and activities to promote safe and healthy families, improve social, emotional, and academic success of children, enhance economic stability, and empower residents to have a voice of leadership in their community.
“Affordable housing, coupled with neighborhood-specific community and resident services, is what truly transforms an area like Richman Park,” said Archuleta.
In Jamboree's ongoing commitment to sustainability, Compass Rose features ENERGY STAR appliances and water-efficient plumbing in each apartment, low-VOC interior paint and paperless drywall in bathrooms, CRI Green Label low-VOC carpeting and underlayment, and low-VOC adhesives. Interiors are heated by a highly efficient central boiler system, and the outdoor landscaping features large planters around the community to capture rainwater runoff.
With these and other sustainable features, Compass Rose is designed to achieve a LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) for Homes Gold rating and to exceed California’s Title 24 CalGreen energy efficiency standards. This certification lowers energy consumption, providing a cost-saving benefit to and promotes the health of residents. The LEED Green Building Rating System is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of high-performance green buildings.
Financing for the $23.3 million development consists of $9.7 million in a city loan from the City of Fullerton; $10.7 million in tax credit equity invested by Union Bank; $2.2 million in permanent financing by Union Bank, and $12.3 million in construction financing provided by Union Bank.