City Heights

Affordable Housing Complex With Unique Building Design Opens in City Heights

The complex consists of separate buildings for seniors and families, brought together by common areas.

NBC Universal, Inc.

A new affordable housing complex is now open in City Heights, offering almost 200 new units for seniors and families.

Residents began moving into the Harris Family Senior Residence and Mid City Family Residence complex in September. The complex, which is located on 44th Street at Fairmount Avenue, is made up of two separate buildings — seniors in one building, families in the other — with common areas designed to create a so-called inter-generational living environment.

“The idea is to foster a sense of real community and interaction, particularly for the seniors, because a lot of them deal with isolation, getting them out of their units, interacting with other people,” said Paul Downey, CEO of Serving Seniors, a social service provider that offers outreach programs and services to residents.

While the project fills a desperate need, it took seven years to build, NBC 7's Artie Ojeda reports.

On the senior side of the complex, there are 117 one-bedroom units, with an average size of about 475 square feet.

On the family side, there are 78 units — two and three bedrooms each — with an average size of 860-1,100 square feet.  

The common spaces include garden and barbeque areas. The complex also has community and meeting rooms, and an open area designed to attract neighborhood residents for community interaction.

Silvia Martinez, 66, had been homeless off and on for several years.

“Right now, I am happy, happy, happy,” Martinez said.

For a time, she lived out of her car, then moved into transitional housing and, finally, into the City Heights complex.

“It’s just beautiful and it’s brand new," Martinez said. "My own personal experience should give hope to other people who are where I was once."

Residents of the affordable housing complex can earn no more than 40% to 60% of the median income of City Heights. Downey said the building was seven years in the making and that there is already a waiting list for future residents.

Contact Us