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Senior housing on horizon Allison K. Sampite | Sat, Sep 25 2010 12:00 PM

At the National City council meeting Tuesday night, the Community Development Commission along with the City Council approved an exclusive one-year negotiation agreement with Senior Housing Partners LLC to expand and enhance the Kimball and Morgan Tower project site, which is on the 1300 block of D Avenue.

In a presentation given by San Diego-based Chelsea Investment Corp., updates included rehabilitation of the existing buildings and adding four stories with nearly 200 new affordable senior units.

The five-year strategic plan, submitted by Senior Village, will produce low- to moderate-income housing to meet the city's regional housing needs.

Currently there is a two and a half- to three-year waiting list for seniors who are qualified to move into the towers. This expansion would help alleviate the waiting process.

According to President and CEO Jim Schmid, the company is active in building homes in the South Bay and has created around 1,000 units, most of which are in Chula Vista.

"We think this is a terribly important project," Schmid said.

According to Morrison, the start date for construction depends on the project phasing, as to not disrupt current occupants. It also depends on the financing cost.

Wendy DeWitt from the San Diego Housing Federation said the goal is to facilitate and develop affordable housing.

"We want to develop the finest affordable senior complex in the city at the lowest possible cost to the city," she said. "It's not just entertainment, it's about holistic health."

In other National City council news, city staff presented three options in response to a previous request from Vice Mayor Alejandra Sotelo-Solis on how to best recognize the city's armed forces.

One option includes creating a wall of honor, which would be displayed in the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center hallway.

For this the city would purchase wall frames or five digital rotating picture frames.

City staff also considered using the city's Web site to highlight military personnel or creating a video monitor display at City Hall.

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