CARLSBAD, CA—Locally-based Chelsea InvestmentCorp. has closed escrow on three properties in San Diegoand Imperial Counties that will provide low-income housing forseveral targeted populations.

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Combined, the transactions will add nearly 260 units toChelsea's portfolio. The company has developed and financed morethan 7,681 affordable-housing propertiesthroughout California, Arizona and New Mexico since 1992.

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“We are excited to be moving forward with these three projects,”said Jim Schmid, Chelsea founder and CEO. “Eachone fits into our mission to provide housing solutions for peoplein search of a quality place to live at affordable rates. Byworking with civic leaders and community organizations, we are ableto help residents meet their needs.”

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The largest development is Westminster Manor, a16-story high-rise apartment building at 1730 ThirdAve., in San Diego. Chelsea represented itself in thetransaction while the seller was represented by VictorKrebs of Colliers International. Purchaseprice was $28,650,000.

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The 152 studio and one-bedroom units for low-income seniorsbuilt in 1972 will undergo a full interior and exterior renovationestimated at $12.5 million. The property wasformerly owned and operated by Westminster Manor of SanDiego, Inc., who has partnered with Chelsea to refinanceand redevelop the building so that it will remain as affordablesenior housing for another 55 years.

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Post-completion, the Chelsea/Westminster Manor of San Diego,Inc. partnership will work with Serving Seniors tomanage services onsite as well as to encourage and inform residentsto take full advantage of Serving Seniors' West Wellness Center,located only three blocks away.

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In a separate transaction, a Chelsea affiliate purchased 3.12acres at 470 Wall Road in the City ofImperial from C&G Farms, Inc., for$650,000. The buyers and sellers represented themselves.

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An existing structure on the property will be demolished to makeway for Las Palmeras Apartments, a complex of 56multifamily homes designed for farm labor households under aprogram sponsored by the US Department ofAgriculture (USDA). Estimated value of the completedproject is $13.6 million.

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The complex will feature 12 one-bedroom, 24 two-bedroom, and 20three-bedroom units. Las Palmeras will be built to LEEDPlatinum level with a solar panel system designed tooffset 90% of the energy load for the units, community room, andlaundry room.

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The third property is a 2.86-acre site at 1070 MeadowsDrive in Calexico that will be home tothe 48-unit Villa Primavera Apartments. Anaffiliate of Chelsea, with Southern California HousingCollaborative as the managing general partner, represented itselfin the $810,000 purchase.

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Designed for large families, the project also includes 17 unitsdesignated for households with at least one developmentallydisabled member. Upon completion, the project is estimated to bevalued at $13.3 million.

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Designed by Hedenkamp Architecture and Planningto meet LEED Gold standards, Villa Primavera willconsist of five two-story garden-style buildings and a communitybuilding with 48 carports and 53 uncovered parking spaces.

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Financing sources include the City of Calexico with CDBG andHOME funds, City Real Estate Advisors as tax credit investor,Multifamily Housing Program through the CaliforniaDepartment of Housing and Community Development, andRabobank, with Chelsea deferring part of itsfees.

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Since 1992, Chelsea has developed 7,681 units of affordablehousing at a cost in excess of $1.4 billion. The firm's developmentportfolio includes urban infill, mixed-use, suburban inclusionary,acquisition rehab and rural developments. Approximately 20% of theunits developed by Chelsea serve specialized populations, includingseniors, farm workers, homeless households, and individuals withphysical and developmental disabilities.

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David Phillips

David Phillips is a Chicago-based freelance writer and consultant with more than 20 years experience in business and community news. He also has extensive reporting experience in the food manufacturing industry for national trade publications.