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City celebrates new 100 percent affordable housing complex in the Mission

San Francisco city officials on Thursday celebrated the grand opening of a $60.4 million new seven-story apartment complex in the Mission District, set to provide 100 percent affordable housing.

Avanza 490, located at 490 S. Van Ness Ave., consists of 80 permanently affordable units, with 32 of those units set aside for Mission District residents, or those who live within a half-mile of the building.

New 100 percent affordable housing site Avanza 490 opened Thursday, July 8, 2021 in San Francisco, Calif.

Amenities inside the new building include a second-floor children’s playground, a community room, and a laundry room.

In addition, the building’s ground floor features a 636-square-foot commercial space to be used by several local nonprofit organizations. Currently, an agreement is being finalized with the organization Asociacion Mayab to use the space to serve the Mayan-speaking community.

Mayor London Breed, who attended Thursday’s ribbon cutting ceremony, praised the newly completed project.

Breed said in a statement:

“It’s projects like this one that will help us reach our housing goals and make San Francisco a more affordable place to live. If we want our city to continue being the diverse place it is today, we must do a better job building housing for working families.”

The site was formerly a gas station and after being identified by city and community leaders as a potential site for new affordable housing, the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development moved to purchase it in 2015.

Supervisor Hillary Ronen, whose district includes the Mission, said:

“When this parcel was proposed for luxury development back in 2015, the community put its foot down and demanded that the city purchase it instead.”

She said:

“As a result of that fruitful partnership between community and City Hall, we get to welcome low-income and working families into their new, forever-affordable homes.”

The new housing was made possible through a partnership between the mayor’s office and both Bridge Housing and Mission Housing Development Corporation.

When Avanza 490 first broke ground in 2018, it was the first new affordable housing project in the Mission in 10 years. Currently, seven new 100 percent affordable housing projects in the Mission are either under construction, already open, or set to open within the next 18 months, city officials said.

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