8181 Allison is expected to be completed in late 2024 and will offer rents starting around $700 per month.
8181 Allison is expected to be completed in late 2024 and will offer rents starting around $700 per month.

USA Properties Fund has started construction on a 147-unit transit-oriented community in La Mesa, California.

The development, 8181 Allison, will be home to residents from early-in-their-career teachers and emergency responders to retirees on a fixed income.

“It’s a development that checks the boxes in so many ways, from providing affordable housing to cost-effective and environmentally friendly public transportation options for getting around the community,” said Geoff Brown, president of USA Properties Fund. “It’s an excellent location for affordable housing, with easy access to so many businesses and services.”

A public-private partnership that includes the California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA), the city of La Mesa, KeyBank, and WNC is key for the $67 million development, according to officials.Rents for 8181 Allison apartments will be significantly less compared with nearby market-rate units in La Mesa—and available to residents earning a wider range of income levels, thanks to CalHFA’s Mixed Income Program. The state agency issued tax-exempt bonds and provided long-term permanent and subsidy loans for the project.

“In this economic environment, we have to be flexible, creative, and collaborative to produce affordable housing like this development that can be life-changing for families in La Mesa,” said CalHFA executive director Tiena Johnson Hall. “I am thrilled that CalHFA and USA Properties Fund were able to work together on a financing solution that includes subsidy funds through our Mixed-Income Program.”

KeyBank Community Development Lending and Investment provided a $42.78 million construction loan for 8181 Allison.

The development will offer affordable one- and two-bedroom units for households earning 30% to 70% of the area median income—or about $29,000 to $82,000 per year. For example, auto mechanics, home health aides, teachers, police officers, and even many employees in the tech industry will meet the income requirements.

Construction is expected to be completed in late 2024. Rents will range from about $700 to $1,675 per month for one-bedroom apartments, depending on the income of residents. Rents for two-bedroom apartments are about $835 to $2,000.

The four-story apartment building will include a community room with a kitchen, a fitness center, computer stations, a Wi-Fi area, on-site laundry, outdoor courtyards, a spa, and a sky deck. The 117-space parking garage will include EV-charging stations.

Apartments will feature energy-efficient appliances and light fixtures, ceiling fans, and low-flow faucets, showers, and toilets. Residents will also have access to social services, such as financial planning, job search assistance, and stabilization.

8181 Allison is in La Mesa’s Downtown Village, putting residents within a short walk to a trolley station and several bus stops as well as just south of Interstate 8, an east-west freeway that connects to much of the San Diego region.