Jardin de Las Rosas

By Lynda Millner   |   May 24, 2018
PSHH president/CEO John Fowler and Carrie Towbes, Ph.D., at the dedication of the Michael Towbes Center

Peoples’ Self-Help Housing finally (postponed due to fire and flood) were able to have the grand opening of their new affordable housing development at 510 North Salsipuedes St. If you’ve driven down Haley Street, it’s that beautiful Spanish-style building on the corner. There were 300 applications, and a lottery was held for the 40 apartments and the lucky winners. We learned when people have stable housing, their income can rise more than 30 percent in one generation.

There are five one-bedroom units, 22 two-bedroom units, and 13 three-bedroom units. This includes a large community center with a multipurpose room, learning center, kitchen, staff offices, and onsite laundry facility plus an interior courtyard and a tot lot. There is a wall with a colorful and beautiful 60-foot by 6-foot mural in the courtyard, which was done by three local artists: Phoebe Brunner, Cynthia James, and Masha Keeting. Interiors by Adele did the decorating. As president and CEO John Fowler said, “I’ve seen the building go up and I’m still impressed.”

Father Dan Lackie gave the invocation. PSHH and The Duncan Group board chair Dave Gustafson introduced the board and staff. Executive vice president and CFO Ken Trigueiro told us the history of Jardin de las Rosas. He first saw the property eight years ago. Redevelopment added funds and the neighborhood wanted the family housing. The corner was a junky eyesore.

The courtyard mural at the new Peoples’ Self-Help Housing
Jeanette Duncan with her award at the PSHH ribbon cutting

Mayor Cathy Murillo remarked, “Everyone knows ‘It take a village,’ but this took an entire metropolis.” There were proclamations given from the Office of Assemblywoman Monique Limon, the Office of State Senator HannahBeth Jackson, and the Office of Congressman Salud Carbajal. A testimonial from Camilla Herrivck, who is a resident was extremely heart-warming. She has two special-needs boys and they have lived for 10 years in a studio. They will be grateful to have a door to their bedroom and a proper table.

The late Michael Towbes was a board member for 20 years and brought his expertise to their projects. His daughter, Carrie, was there to cut the ribbon for the community center dedicated to her father. Carrie told that her father always said, “There’s only one thing better than a ground-breaking and that is a ribbon cutting.” He also added, “Don’t build what you want. Build what the community needs.”

A fabulous addition to affordable housing is the Jeanette Duncan Learning Center. It has been around so many years they have kids who are now college graduates. Jeanette remembers one little boy. She asked him what he wanted to do when he grew up. He replied, “I want to go to Harvard and be a Supreme Court judge.” I think the learning center might have had something to do with that!

The morning ended with a ribbon cutting and lunch. If you want to know more, log on to www.pshhc.org.


You might also be interested in...