NEW’s Community-Driven, Multi-Sector, Multi-Partner Approach
It started with a vision driven by a neighborhood. NEW began its community development work in the North Westlake/Belmont area of Pico-Union, a traditionally recent immigrant area of Downtown Los Angeles, just walking distance from the 110 freeway. NEW started with housing, and built community resources around that housing to break generational cycles of poverty, and uplift families by providing safe spaces for low-income families to transform into economic prosperity.
With perseverance and a commitment to community, NEW developed Casa Loma, its ground-breaking affordable housing development of 110 apartments in 1993. This was the first affordable housing development in the country built from the perspective of a single-parent mother, answering the question: What kind of rental housing would allow a single-parent mother and her family to thrive? La Villa Mariposa soon followed, which was 115 apartments for larger families, and La Posada was born in 1996, providing 60 safe and affordable transitional housing for teen mothers and their one child.
Prosperity Center was acquired in 2000 and has become an anchor for NEW’s activities in the Pico-Union area. Prosperity Center is a 24,000 three-story commercial building and the site of three nonprofits working in tandem to improve the livelihood of our client families in a unique and innovative partnership at our site. The building now serves NEW’s local five affordable housing developments and over 300 units of affordable housing within walking distance of Prosperity Center. In this multipurpose commercial development, NEW now houses:
- NEW’s Latino Tech Net and Financial Literacy programs;
- Six charter elementary school classrooms for our partner, the NEW Academy of Sciences and Arts
- 6,000 sq.ft. of clinic space for our second nonprofit partner, the Arroyo Vista Family Health Center.
Prosperity Center is located next door to Casa Loma, across the street from NEW’s Tres Palmas Apartments for large families, featuring 19 apartments of 3- and 4-bedroom apartments for larger families. It is also within walking distance of various other local affordable housing developments, and the Para Los Ninos child development center (a childcare center of NEW’s additional partner nonprofit, Para Los Ninos). Also around the corner are Belmont High School and Alliance Charter Academy, as well as Miguel Contreras High School, all high-performing partners of NEW’s programs and services.
Located just one mile from the local Metro transit station, NEW’s five affordable housing developments and Prosperity Center are all centrally located along the 3rd Street corridor, providing high-speed bus service into and out of Downtown Los Angeles as a major transportation corridor for our neighborhood.
NEW’s community-driven, multi-sector, multi-partner approach underscores the necessity for continuity of community conversations to ensure that our local community’s real estate development is shaped by our neighborhood’s vision for transportation resources, affordable and safe housing, our desires for high-performing schools and services, and our interest in bringing healthcare resources to our community to ensure that we may grow healthy and prosperous in the years to come.