Construction Underway on Unique Project Providing Affordable Housing to Disabled Residents

Construction is currently underway on the first ever affordable housing project developed by the City of Fresno specifically for persons with physical disabilities. Arbor Court Apartments in southeast Fresno will feature one and two bedroom units and will be fully ADA compliant. Amenities will include roll-in baths, accessible sinks, grab bars, expanded doorways, and lowered light switches. The 20-unit development is located at 4830 E. Laurel Avenue.

Arbor Court is a partnership between the City of Fresno and EAH Housing (EAH Inc.) and is being built by Fresno-based Ashwood Construction Company. The project is made possible through financing from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Section 811 Program, the City of Fresno HOME Program, and the Federal Home Loan Bank’s Affordable Housing Program. HUD’s Section 811 Program is designed to provide persons with disabilities an opportunity to live independently by funding affordable housing projects that include supportive services.

“The development of Arbor Court demonstrates the value of public-private partnerships in our Valley,” said HUD representative Rollie Smith. “HUD’s mission is sustainable, inclusive communities and here we have a local community demonstrating how to do it.”

Fresno City Councilmember Mike Dages said, “I am excited to see this long awaited project move forward. It will finally provide our special needs population with the affordable housing and services they need.”

“Helping to ensure that everyone has a place to call home is the mission of EAH Housing,” said Mary Murtagh, President and CEO. “Arbor Court will provide much-needed affordable housing to folks who often are overlooked by the housing market,” she said.

Bob Hand, Executive Director of Resources for Independence, a Central Valley advocacy organization, expressed appreciation and support for the development as well. “We are proud to be a partner of the Arbor Court development and we are looking forward to providing services to Arbor Court’s future residents.” Arbor Court Apartments is scheduled for completion in January, 2011.

“This much needed affordable housing project will complement other strategic steps taken by the City to provide services to special needs populations, such as adoption and implementation of Universal Design standards and continued support of the Disability Advisory Committee, said Craig Scharton, director of the City of Fresno Downtown and Community Revitalization Department. “We are grateful to EAH Housing for undertaking this project and persevering in its development. We look forward to the creation of additional accessible housing projects in the future,” said Craig Scharton, City of Fresno, Downtown and Community Revitalization Department Director.