By SB Unified
Santa Barbara Unified and the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara (HACSB) detailed plans being considered to develop housing for district teachers and staff.
Last spring, the District’s Board of Trustees requested staff look for potential opportunities to develop housing for educators on land already owned by the District.
A committee involving two board members, District Staff, District legal counsel, and Housing Authority leaders met starting in March 2023.
The committee reviewed income distribution for all households in Santa Barbara and how they relate to housing prices, surveyed District staff as to their housing needs, conducted a property-by-property review of all District-owned properties that are within the city limits of Santa Barbara, and provided a more in-depth look at the properties that hold the most promise for housing development.
The Parma School site at 915 E Montecito St, Santa Barbara, CA 93103, was selected as the best prospect. The site contains 0.66 acres and is located close to shopping, transportation, and schools. A preliminary architectural study indicates that a 40 to 45-unit development is feasible.
“This presentation was a culmination of months of hard work and research by our staff and the staff at the Housing Authority of Santa Barbara. The project is just one piece of the puzzle of the larger need in our community for affordable housing for our community. I continue to urge my fellow leaders in both the public and private sectors to meet this moment as well with their time, resources, and land. We have a ways to go in this process but look forward to seeing it through to help our teachers and staff,” said Dr. Hilda Maldonado, Superintendent.
The project would be financed through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program, and no District funds would be needed.
The Housing Authority would act as developer and property manager on the project.
“Our community has long struggled to find affordable housing in the city. In partnering with Santa Barbara Unified School District, we’re harnessing collective strengths to address this need. The Parma School site is a promising step. As we progress, we aim not just to house our educators, but to inspire innovative housing solutions elsewhere. Together, we’re building a brighter future for Santa Barbara,” said Rob Fredericks, Executive Director of the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara.
The Board of Trustees directed District Staff to work with the Housing Authority to develop a partnership to develop a project on a school site and continue to find other locations for future projects both inside and outside city limits.
To read the full Board Report, click here.