New Way Homes has made a “First Projects Development Loan” to Envision I, LLC to help fund the early-stage development work to initiate one or more projects consistent with the New Way Homes mission. The four specific projects furthest along are described below.
Peace United Church
Located on the west side of Santa Cruz near the University of California and easily accessible by bike to both the University and downtown Santa Cruz. The congregation's leadership approached Envision Housing and New Way Homes in 2017 to put together a residential project that will both serve the community’s housing needs and generate the Church an ongoing source of income.
Residential Units: The concept for this project is to build both some very low-income aﬀordable housing units and some group houses, along with amenities that make the whole project an interacting community. Current plans include 81 bedrooms, a community oriented space, as well as outdoor amenities.
PSH Downtown Santa Cruz
Building: The orange area at right is the proposed 4-story building on the campus containing several organizations that serve homeless individuals and families. 60–90 small, 1-person units with community space would be built over parking and program space for the River Street Shelter and Recuperative Care Center.
Background: It is a nationally recognized best practice for communities to have a permanent supportive housing residential building co-located with coordinated services for the most housing-challenged of the chronic homeless population. This is an essential compliment to the scattered-site approach for assisting the majority of homeless individuals and families into housing, but it is not something that exists in Santa Cruz County.
Mixed-Use Downtown Watsonville Re-Development
Site: Up to 3.9 acres in the center of downtown Watsonville. The majority of the site is owned by the City, while the project developer, Envision Housing, is under contract to purchase the private portion.
Building: Current concepts include 200-500+ residential units in 5-6-story towers over parking, retail along Main Street, and new government space.
Background: Downtown Watsonville has been underdeveloped since the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. The City approached Envision Housing to jointly explore details of a potential project on this site. Watsonville has extraordinary unmet demand for workforce housing; meeting this need with density downtown would re-energize the vitality of that commercial district and its community spaces.
Status: Envision Housing and Watsonville staff are working together to explore project concepts, potential agreements, and the process required to make planning changes for downtown Watsonville that would enable this project. Those processes are likely to continue throughout 2017.