BRIDGE Housing Corp. has created affordable housing for a diverse population in downtown San Diego through an innovative financing structure. 

The 250-unit Celadon at 9th and Broadway serves a multigenerational population, including 25 units for youths aging out of foster care and adults under the Mental Health Services Act, 63 units for seniors under the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly, and the remainder for the adult workforce.

To make the deal work, BRIDGE Housing split the 17-story high-rise, which also includes two and a half levels of underground parking and ground-floor retail space, into 9% and 4% low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) projects. The building is vertically subdivided between the seventh and eighth floors, with the 129 units on floors one through seven being the 9% LIHTC project and the 121 units on floors eight through 17 being the 4% project.

It is the first development in California to receive both 9% and 4% LIHTCs in a single building. The development team worked with the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee on a regulation change that would allow the high-rise to be built under the 9% LIHTC given the time restraints on that program. 

The $74.7 million development, which was completed at the end of February, also is one of the last to receive redevelopment agency funds in San Diego after the agencies were eliminated in 2012.

“It’s great that we can provide affordable housing for folks downtown who just couldn’t afford it before,” says Aruna Doddapaneni, BRIDGE’s director of development for Southern California.

The development is pursuing LEED Gold certification and includes an eco-roof with drought-tolerant plants, highly efficient mechanical systems, solar hot-water panels on the roof, and a 143-foot vertical solar photovoltaic system, which is said to be the tallest electric solar system of its kind in North America.