TRPA approves South Lake Tahoe affordable housing project |

TRPA approves South Lake Tahoe affordable housing project

Adam Jensen
Provided to the tribuneAn artist's rendering depicts The Aspens at South Lake Tahoe affordable housing project.

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – A $16 million, 56-unit affordable housing project in South Lake Tahoe passed Tahoe Regional Planning Agency scrutiny on Thursday morning.

Construction on the Aspens at South Lake Tahoe affordable housing project could begin as early as September, said Shellan Miller, the project manager for developers Pacific West Communities.

But groundbreaking on the project, located near the corner of Ski Run Boulevard and Pioneer Trail, likely won’t start until May 2011 because of outstanding funding for the project, Miller said.

Earlier this month the California Department of Housing and Community Development approved $2.1 million for the project. In August, the South Lake Tahoe Redevelopment Agency provided a $1.5 million loan. Obtaining the bulk of the remaining funding for the project depends on securing California tax credits, Miller said.

The Aspens at South Lake Tahoe will include seven two-story and four three-story apartment complexes, a community center and laundry facilities. Developers hope to incorporate enough environmentally friendly features to be reach LEED certification, Miller said on Thursday.

Forty-eight of the apartments would be rented to households that make less than 60 percent of El Dorado County’s median income. Eight of the units would be reserved for those who make 80 percent of the county’s median household income. El Dorado County’s median household income was $64,256 in 2007, according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics.

How much the apartments will cost to rent is determined by the state, but will likely run between $400 and $1,000 per month, said Nancy Kerry, the city’s Redevelopment and Housing Manager.

City attorney Patrick Enright told the Governing Board on Thursday that the city will encourage Pacific West Communities to use local contractors during the construction of the project, something Miller said the company does anyway.

Paul Moniot, a member of the Carpenters Local Union 1798 lauded the move at Thursday’s meeting.

“This will help support our economy at a time when every dollar counts,” Kerry said while addressing the board.

Jean Haymes, a representative of residents of the adjacent Villa Tahoe condominiums, said she has concerns about the adequacy of parking at the project, as well as the configuration of an exit.

A secondary exit from the project will share a road with South Lake Tahoe Fire Department’s Fire Station No. 1. and Haymes said the number of calls the fire department receives is likely to cause cars to back up in the exit and cause problems at the traffic light.

Haymes also expressed concerns about one of the project’s buildings blocking her neighbors view.

But the board was not swayed, unanimously approving the project.

During the first half of the TRPA’s meeting, which took place in Incline Village on Wednesday, the Governing Board also approved an expansion of the Tahoe Keys Marina without discussion.

The expansion will include the construction of a 27,000 square-foot boat barn capable of storing 150 boars and a 29-foot-wide, 100-foot-long boat lift.

The projects are included under the Tahoe Keys Marina Master Plan, which was approved by the TRPA in May 2002.

The boat lift won’t be built until litigation surrounding the TRPA’s Shorezone Ordinance Amendments is resolved, according to a TRPA staff memorandum.

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