The Partnership for the Bay's Future, a public-private partnership working to address the affordable housing crisis in the Bay Area, has announced inaugural challenge grants as well as $30 million in loans in support of efforts to preserve and develop affordable housing in the region.
Launched in January 2019 with support from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative; the Ford, Hewlett, Packard, San Francisco, and Silicon Valley Community foundations; the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC); and Facebook, Genentech, and Kaiser Permanente, the fund has met its initial goal of raising $500 million ahead of schedule and, over the next five years, will work to preserve and produce more than eight thousand homes in San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Alameda, and Contra Costa counties.
To that end, the partnership awarded challenge grants to seven municipalities and local nonprofits working to advance innovative housing policies, including providing renters and communities with the right to purchase affordable homes before they are sold to outside investors, ensuring countywide protections for renters, and exploring new approaches to building community wealth. The recipients include Alameda County and Resources for Community Development; the City of Berkeley and the East Bay Community Law Center; the City of East Palo Alto and the East Palo Alto Community Alliance and Neighborhood Development Organization (EPA CAN DO); the City of Oakland and the Bay Area For All (BA4A) Preservation Table; the City of Palo Alto and SV@Home; the City of Redwood City and the Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County; and the City of San Jose and SOMOS Mayfair. In addition to their grant, each jurisdiction will have access to technical assistance and consultants and will be matched with a mid-career fellow who has the expertise needed to advance affordable housing solutions.
The fund also has closed seven loans totaling nearly $30 million for projects that will create or preserve more than eight hundred units of housing, 97 percent of them designed to be affordable for households earning less than 80 percent of the area's median income. The investments, which leverage an additional $100 million from other sources, will support the construction, renovation, and/or preservation of permanent supportive housing, co-living spaces, and senior housing.
"Investors are connecting their capital to their values in order to make Bay Area housing more affordable and anchor economic opportunity throughout the region," said LISC president and CEO Maurice A. Jones. "And this is just the beginning. We have a robust pipeline of development projects, a committed lineup of local partners, and a diverse group of investors from health care, finance, technology, and philanthropy — all focused on ways to positively impact the housing outlook for families and to keep communities competitive."
(Photo credit: Partnership for the Bay's Future)