Jonathan Ramirez, ArchLenz Photography

Nonprofit EAH Housing has delivered much-needed affordable housing for seniors in Santa Monica, California—an area known for its desirable location, beaches, and proximity to Los Angeles but also its high housing costs.

Magnolia Villas features 39 one-bedroom units for seniors 62 and older earning between 30% and 60% of the area median income as well as a two-bedroom manager’s unit. Select units have been modified for residents with mobility, vision, or hearing issues.

Jonathan Ramirez, ArchLenz Photography

EAH Housing has partnered with EngAGE, a nonprofit that provides services to support residents' mental and physical health and well-being. The community’s amenities also prioritize aging in place, with a 2,000-square-foot outdoor courtyard and community garden, a community room, and a fitness center.

“Providing affordable housing options for seniors in Santa Monica was particularly important to us, as most of the affordable housing being developed and previously created for low-income residents in Santa Monica was geared toward families and individuals experiencing homelessness, neglecting an important and growing segment of our community,” says Welton Jordan, chief real estate development officer. “Housing seniors can help alleviate financial burdens and improve overall quality of life. By reducing housing costs, seniors have more disposable income to allocate toward health care, medications, healthy food, transportation, and other essential needs.”

The city of Santa Monica played a key role in the $23.8 million development. It contributed an $11.4 million award from its Affordable Housing Trust Fund. The project also utilized 9% low-income housing tax credits.

The community’s design by DE Architects also stands out. Located at an intersection between mixed-use and residential zones, Magnolia Villas has been designed in a series of single-story cubes that appear to cascade down as they transition the building from four stories on one end to a perceived single story on the other.