River District Landing, a new two-phase development, includes plans to convert the former 272-unit Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Sacramento into a revitalized residential community to serve working families and formerly homeless individuals. This is the latest redevelopment project in the River District, a business improvement district located just north of downtown Sacramento and bordered to the north by the American River. The adaptive reuse of this hotel conversion at 321 Bercut Drive is a joint partnership among Jamboree, the City of Sacramento Housing Authority – which is a member of the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency (SHRA) – and Hope Cooperative, also known as TLCS, Inc.
Renovation of the two-parcel site will be completed in two phases:
During Phase 1, Jamboree and Hope Cooperative will provide immediate housing with extensive supportive services for residents via funds secured through Homekey, a pool of $550 million created from the federal CARES Act coronavirus relief package and administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) to help local governments purchase hotels and motels to permanently house homeless individuals. Governments and developers have to move swiftly on the program, as the CARES Act funds expire on December 31, 2020. As a result, Jamboree will work quickly to make necessary repairs and replace furnishings and systems at Bercut Village. Onsite services will provide the health and stability necessary for formerly homeless residents to successfully live independently.
After receiving entitlements to operate as permanent housing and securing additional funding, Bercut Village will be fully developed into Permanent Supportive Housing. Kitchenettes will be added to each studio, and other building improvements will be made to keep the property well maintained for years to come.
Bercut Village is not a shelter. Unlike temporary shelters, supportive housing combines affordable housing with best-practice services for individuals with disabilities and a history of homelessness. Individuals must qualify for this specific housing and are referred to the property from participating agencies, and a vast array of onsite resident services will be provided. There will be no onsite intake center at Bercut Village for those experiencing homelessness.
Hope Cooperative will provide onsite services to Bercut Village residents, including case management, life skills education, and opportunities for social connectedness and meaningful activities, with the goal of long-term housing stability. Since the 1980s, the nonprofit has been providing behavioral health and supportive housing services for people with mental health challenges, serving more than 8,000 people in the Sacramento community each year.
Phase 2 of the development project will convert the remaining hotel units into 130 to 170 apartments for working families. Currently, Discovery Apartment Homes is slated for completion in 2024.
River District Landing’s two phases will both serve as an immediate step to positively impact the challenges of homelessness in the area and proactively promote housing choice in the River District. Also, Bercut Village and Discovery Apartment Homes will address the tremendous and long-standing need for housing at all income levels. When complete, River District Landing will demonstrate what’s possible when private and public sectors collaborate to address the city’s significant housing shortage.
We had our first online neighborhood workshop for the community to share information on the proposed new construction development and its effect on the surrounding community on Wednesday, September 23 at 6 p.m.
Neighbors inquired about Jamboree’s history in Sacramento. With seven properties in the region since 2004, an office in Northern California, and partnerships with local community organizations, Jamboree is familiar with the needs of the Sacramento area.
Phase 1: Permanent Supportive Housing vs. interim housing
The facility will begin as interim housing while entitlements and financing are secured in order to begin Phase 1 construction. All of Bercut Village’s 102 units are slated for occupancy by March 2021. Residents must be currently homeless, at risk of homelessness, or impacted by COVID-19 to qualify. Further, Jamboree is committed to working with Sacramento Steps Forward as they create a process to give priority to individuals currently homeless in the River District. There is no mental health diagnosis requirement.
Bercut Village will operate as interim housing until construction is complete. At that time, and once kitchens are installed in each unit, it will convert to Permanent Supportive Housing.Camping
Neighbors expressed concern that the building may draw family and friends camping. Bercut Village will have 24/7 onsite staff and security, as well as controlled access to the property and Jamboree will work closely with the Department of Community Response for the city of Sacramento to help campers find housing and services. Drop-in services will not be available at this property, which will reduce a lot of the foot traffic seen at other sites.
Neighbors inquired as to whether those in interim housing will be moved to workforce housing. Those who live at Bercut Village in Phase 1’s permanent supportive housing with robust services will have the option to stay there or to move to workforce housing in Phase 2, if they qualify, when it becomes available. Whether individuals move or not depends on several factors, including income, personal needs, level of services required, etc.
Jamboree will seek entitlements in spring and summer of 2021, which will provide approval to operate and convert the building into permanent multifamily housing. Next, Jamboree will secure funding and apply for building permits, which is the reason for the staggered construction schedule between Phase 1 and Phase 2. Entitlements will be secured in summer or fall of 2021, depending on the planning department. Building permits will follow once all funding is secured, and construction will begin in 2022.
Neighbors inquired about the effect of the building on the fire department. The conversion to Permanent Supportive Housing should reduce the calls for services, and the 24/7 security and staff will be trained to address a variety of situations to reduce the need for emergency services. The building renovation will also be consistent with any local fire code and regulations.
Neighbors expressed concern about the impact of the building on businesses in the River District. Jamboree plans to form partnerships with the police and other organizations in the community to collaborate with ongoing efforts to address homelessness in the River District. Phase 1 will move those efforts forward by providing housing and services for 102 currently homeless individuals in the community, reducing the total number of homeless in the area.
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