Council President Reid Kicks Off Affordable Housing Project

By Carla Thomas Oakland City Council President Larry Reid held a celebration Oct. 24 at the corner of McArthur and Durant streets in East Oakland, as a demolition team knocked down an old Giant Burger fast food franchise to make room for Oakland 34, a new housing development for seniors. The development will include 27 one-bedroom units and 6 two-bedroom units, ranging from approximately 575 to 910 square feet. “Oakland 34 is an exciting project because it will create three permanent jobs upon completion and will employ dozens over the construction period,” said Reid.  The complex is scheduled to be completed by  summer 2014. The development is one of many backed by Reid, including a 72,000-square-foot Foothill Square project that features a Foods Co. grocery store. Increasing affordable housing in Oakland has been a major focus of the City Council, and according to Mayor Jean Quan, many similar projects are on the table. “We have 11 more projects in the pipeline for affordable housing, and we are one of the few cities in our region that have created these opportunities in the community,” said Quan. Reid’s teamwork with Meta Housing Corporation, which is building Oakland 34, began nine months ago.  “This is the perfect match because Meta Housing did not require a dime of city money,” said Reid. “The cost of living has out-priced many, and we are proud to offer seniors an affordable option in high quality residences, a convenient location and free on-site social services, “said Meta Housing Corporation Vice President Christopher Maffris. According to Reid, District 7, which he represents, has the highest number of housing development projects in the city.  “So many opportunities exist in our city, and this particular project will allow seniors who helped build this city live comfortably in a nice environment,” he said. Reid said he especially appreciated the efforts of Gloria Jeffries and Jean Blackshire, who have been instrumental in advocating for change along the McArthur corridor for a decade, working with the redevelopment departments and the city.
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