Affordable Housing at Mary Helen Rogers Senior Community

The Mary Helen Rogers Senior Community in San Francisco’s Western Addition.

By Carla Thomas The Mary Helen Rogers Senior Community in San Francisco’s Western Addition is a new affordable housing project scheduled to open in 2013, which is being built by the Chinatown Community Development Center, Tabernacle Community Development Corporation and UrbanCore, LLC. Located at 701 Golden Gate Ave., the 100-unit project is named for Western Addition community activist Mary Helen Rogers and will include artistic tributes to her and her legacy. The building will include business suites, 28 studios and 72 one bedroom units along with 20 units dedicated to the homeless through the Department of Public Health’s Direct Access to Housing program. Units will offer granite countertops, appliances, underground parking and on-site resident services along with a community room, kitchen and computer-learning center.  Studios rents range  from $696 to $870, with one bedroom units priced at $795-$994. To qualify, an applicant’s minimum income level must be twice the monthly rent, with one of the household members age 55 and older. This development offers SFRA certificate holders preference – a certificate given to those displaced from the community during the redevelopment era of the 1960s. This housing opportunity will allow those displaced persons to re-locate to the community affordably. Other project partners are the Bayview Hunters Point Multi Purpose Senior Center, Rev. Amos Brown, San Francisco Urban CDC and Northern California Presbyterian Homes and Services. Archbishop Gregory Richardson, Felisia Thibodeaux and Cathy Davis, executive director of the Bayview Multi Purpose Senior Center, describe this opportunity as a “dream come true” for displaced residents of the 1960s in the Bay View and Western Addition. Application assistance is available at the Western Addition Senior Center. Application assistance is also available at Bethel AME Church, Bayview Hunters Point Multipurpose Center, Dr. George Davis Senior Service Center and the San Francisco Christian Center through August 24. “When re-development came into the community and requested people to move out, they gave them a certificate of preference (SFRAA certificate),” said Richardson. Applicants will be selected by lottery, and applications can be obtained at or 12 other Bay Area locations. “We are very excited to provide outreach and extend this opportunity,” said Gordon Leung of the Chinatown Community Development Center. Return applications by mail to P.O. Box 423120, SF, CA 94121-3120 and postmarked no later than midnight Aug. 31. The TTY phone number is 415-984-9910.  First priority will be given to certificate preference holders. Those who believe they are entitled to an SFRA Certificate of Preference should call 415-701-5613.
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