Oregon Housing and Community Services announced awards of more than $73.33 million for the construction of 625 affordable homes in wildfire-affected counties across the state. The Oregon Housing Stability Council (HSC) awarded the latest rounds of program funding during their past meetings. Most of the funding will go toward development of rental housing, and some will go toward homeownership.
These awards will add needed affordable housing supply in the counties of the state affected by wildfires, including the 2020 Labor Day Fires that burned 1 million acres. More than 4,000 homes were destroyed, including more than 1,700 manufactured homes in 20 manufactured home parks.
More than $7 million in funding will go to convert the Talent Mobile Estates into a resident-owned cooperative. The manufactured dwelling park was destroyed during the 2020 Almeda Fire in Jackson County, displacing 89 families. Many of the residents were Latino/a families who worked in agriculture and other low-wage service jobs. They have been displaced from their community for the past 20 months. The Phoenix-Talent School District reported that nearly 40% of its students lost their homes to the fire, causing a significant social, emotional and economic disruption. CASA of Oregon will work with its partner, Coalición Fortaleza, to engage residents displaced from the area as they develop the project.
“I’ve been spending a lot of time in Southern Oregon and the Latinx community has been disproportionately affected,” said HSC Councilmember Gerard Sandoval, PhD. “This is a perfect type of project that is needed because it has strong community ties and is resident-owned.”
Here is the list of Jackson County projects being funded:
Orchard Meadows and Prescott Gardens. 196 combined rental units. $9,000,000
Summit Gardens. 34 rental units. $6,060,000
Talent Senior Apartments. 22 rental units. $3,181,400
New Spirit Village. 42 Affordable, 42 Market Homeownership. $4,300,000
Talent Mobile Estates. 89 Co-op – Acquisition $7,500,000
The council also awarded funding to Marion County to buy 15 acres of land for future development of new affordable homes. The site has the potential to establish a mix of two- to-four-bedroom single-family homes for wildfire survivors, seniors and workforce housing in the Santiam Canyon.