Project DescriptionThe new vibrant and contemporary building not only complements but also enriches the surrounding neighborhood. Completed in February 2016, Ashland Place not only provides low income residents a stable and safe place to call home, it has become an integral part in improving the economic development of the area.
Developed by the non-profit agency, Resources for Community Development (RCD), Ashland Place provides 85 units of new affordable housing for households with incomes that do not exceed 50% of the area median income. Fifteen of the one bedroom units are set aside for young adults who are at risk of becoming homeless.
The project site is in unincorporated Alameda County between San Leandro and Hayward, an area with higher poverty rates than much of the Bay Area. Funding for the project came in part through the County Development Agency to improve the area by better serving its residents and raising the overall economic vitality. The County also deeded a portion of property at E 14th Street and Kent Avenue, to allow for re-alignment of the intersection, creating a more pedestrian-friendly street and a small public plaza. At this prime corner location, a community-based market and café will open in 2017, at the provided ground floor retail space. It will be a market for local food related businesses, retail job training and a community gathering space.
This new development is located a stones-throw from the newly opened Ashland Youth Center which provides an array of activities and services to local youth. In the early stages of the design, we met with some of the young people who had helped in the development of the youth center to get their input in the design and layout of the project. Some of the suggestions from those early meetings worked their way into the final design. Additionally, we participated in several community presentations where we talked with neighbors and other community members to solicit their feedback.
Ashland Place is comprised of four separate buildings, grouped around a central courtyard with covered patios and plentiful green space. Open stairs between units access the common walk paths into the courtyard, allowing for resident interaction and a sense of community. Parking was placed at the perimeter of the project to create this shared space at the heart of the project.
In addition to a large multi-purpose community room, residents have access to a garden with raised planter beds, a computer center, and an on-site office for resident services. A children’s play area is conveniently situated outside of the communal laundry where parents can keep an eye on their children. The project is GreenPoint Rated with numerous green building features.