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The construction of an affordable housing project for veterans in Ventura has begun.

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The construction of an affordable housing project for veterans in Ventura has begun.

Ventura is one step closer to realising a $69 million affordable housing project for veterans.

The groundbreaking for Ventura Springs, a 9.68-acre project with 122 units for veterans, took place on Wednesday. The construction will contain 120 homes for low-income veterans and their families, as well as two manager’s units, at 10795 Cosmos Drive, with a cross street of Telephone Road.

Steve Peck, president and CEO of U.S. Vets, a co-developer of the initiative that provides services and other help to veterans, has interviewed thousands of veterans about their ambitions, dreams, and needs and based his services on the results.

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Peck, a Marine Corps veteran who served in Vietnam for a year, said, “We’ve wanted to come to Ventura for at least 15 years.”

On Wednesday, June 15, 2022, the groundbreaking for Ventura Springs, a 9.68-acre project, will take place. There will be 122 homes in the $69 million affordable housing complex for veterans.
Nine speakers and scores of dignitaries attended the groundbreaking ceremony, including Ventura Mayor Sofia Rubalcava, Councilmember Jeannette Sanchez-Palacios, Councilwoman Lorrie Brown, and Ventura County Supervisor Matt LaVere.

The project’s principal developer is A Community of Friends, a nonprofit affordable housing developer based in Los Angeles.

According to a press release, Ventura Springs will provide residents with supportive services such as mental health counselling, case management, career development, and life skills training.

According to a news release, the project will be built in a campus-like environment and will include a computer lab, outdoor meeting spaces, a community garden, recreational facilities, and a fitness centre.

Ventura County’s Veterans
On Wednesday, June 15, 2022, speakers from the $69 million Ventura Springs home project for veterans prepare to pick up a shovel.
According to LaVere, Ventura County is home to more over 50,000 veterans.

“Over the last five years, we’ve seen a 25% increase in homelessness,” he stated. “Fortunately, we aren’t seeing that with veterans, but the truth remains that there are veterans on our streets.”

“Over the last five years, we’ve seen a 25% increase in homelessness,” he stated. “Fortunately, we aren’t seeing that with veterans, but the truth remains that there are veterans on our streets.”

City and county officials, as well as residents, do not want to see homeless veterans on the streets. Projects like Ventura Springs are critical in achieving that aim, according to LaVere.

According to Cindy Monticue, a spokeswoman for US Vets, the project is the first supportive housing complex for veterans in Ventura.

During the pandemic, the number of homeless veterans in Ventura County declined. There will be 94 homeless veterans in 2020. The number fell to 71 in 2022.

Officials pointed out that the point-in-time figures, which are tallied once a year, do not include veterans who are considered chronically homeless. In 2020, there were 27 chronically homeless veterans, and by 2022, the number had risen to 44.

Bank of America, the California Department of Housing and Community Development, and the city of Ventura are among the corporate and public funders for the project.

The Ventura City Council unanimously approved a $74,100 grant from the city’s Successor Housing Agency Fund in December to assist get construction underway. Another $545,000.00 was approved by the council in May 2021.

According to Dora Leong Gallo, president and CEO of A Community of Friends, the city will provide $3.2 million in total, using money and deferred fees. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2023, with a grand opening in early 2024, according to her.

Because of rising construction costs last year and this year, Monticue said the project’s overall cost jumped from $60.5 million in December 2021 to $69 million.

A waitlist for persons who are interested will be developed six months before the project is done, according to Gallo. She indicated that before the completion of A Community of Friends, more information will be included on signs, posters, and the website.

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