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Grover Beach affordable housing project re-designed to save giant oak tree

Posted at 9:35 PM, Apr 10, 2023
and last updated 2023-04-11 02:39:26-04

The Grover Beach City Council is moving forward with plans to build affordable housing near a busy intersection.

Dozens of affordable housing units are coming to the vacant lot near the corner of 13th Street and West Grand Avenue.

Construction would begin as soon as December.

We are getting a first look at new designs for a 52-unit affordable housing project which are meant to make the development fit better into the coastal feel of Grover Beach.

“The first thing I did was pull color pallets. So, we’re bringing in the ocean, we’re bringing in the sand, we’re bringing in wood,” said David Gibbs, who was brought as the project architect to make the new development look nicer.

Changes include a welcome arch and making the building more prominent by bringing it closer to West Grand Avenue.

“Just all around, we need more housing in California,” said Dalia Flores, who is the project manager.

The proposal calls for studios as well as one-and two-bedroom apartments that will offer affordable housing in the City of Grover Beach.

“So, we’re able to serve a portion of our community that otherwise may not be able to afford that housing,” said Grover Beach Community Development Director Megan Martin.

The project manager says it’s difficult to find a place to build affordable housing in a city that is running out of space.

“We have a great piece of property that we’ve been able to work with the city to get ahold of and we’re excited to bring this on board,” said Flores.

The re-design also includes saving this 100-year-old oak tree that was previously going to be cut down.

“We have, instead, two buildings that allow room for that oak tree to remain. We went out with our arborists, took a look, and scanned it,” explained Gibbs.

The giant oak will provide a shaded area for residents to go outside and relax.

“So, when you have your playground now on the other side of the tree, you’re gonna get fantastic shade for all the kids that are going to be playing there--enjoying, barbecuing, doing their picnicking,” said Gibbs in a presentation to the Grover Beach City Council on Monday evening.

Grover Beach Mayor Karen Bright says the oak tree being saved is likely one of the oldest in the entire city.

The Grover Beach City Council voted to waive development impact fees until a later date to help the developers--which are People’s Self-help Housing and the Housing Authority of San Luis Obispo.