Councilmember Gil Cedillo (CD 1), center, joined by community leaders and other city officials, broke ground recently on a project to build interim housing in Northeast Los Angeles for up to 130 homeless individuals. | Photo courtesy of CD 1

Construction starts in Cypress Park on interim housing for the homeless

2022 Editions Featured Homelessness in L.A. June Politics

By T.A. Hendrickson

Councilmember Gil Cedillo (CD-1) and other city officials broke ground last week on a 34-unit housing project in Cypress Park for up to 130 homeless individuals.

Named “Northeast New Beginnings Community,” the project is part of the city’s Interim Housing Program to provide temporary housing and supportive services to the homeless as a step toward permanent housing. It will be located on unused city-owned land at 503 N. San Fernando Road, near the traffic roundabout that also accesses Riverside Drive and Figueroa Street.

A unique design sets the Northeast New Beginnings Community apart from other city shelters. It will be the first to use a pre-manufactured, residential prototype that can be knit together to form duplexes and fourplexes. In all, 32 state-approved modular units will house up to four people each. Each unit includes a bedroom, bathroom with shower, kitchenette and living/dining area. Two units for disabled residents will house one person each.

Rendering of a typical quadplex and floor plan in the Northeast New Beginnings Community | Image by L.A. Bureau of Engineering

“I want to ensure that we give them [the homeless] a place that looks and feels like a home,” said Cedillo, who was involved in the project’s design and in selecting colors and materials for the residential units.

Common areas were also a priority for Cedillo. Seating and shade umbrellas are provided for gathering and meal services. There’s a separate laundry station. The site will be pet friendly and includes an outdoor pet area. “I wanted to develop a sense of community and identity and highlight areas of gathering,” said Cedillo.

Rendering of the Northeast New Beginnings Community, to be completed in the fall. | Image by L.A. Bureau of Engineering

In L.A., interim housing focuses on providing shelter, security, meals and hygiene facilities, as well as on-site mental health care, substance abuse treatment and other supportive services. In addition, on-site case managers work with residents to locate, apply for and obtain permanent housing.  

Interim housing can last up to two years – or longer if there is documented justified reason for extension. But shelter residents need to be certified every 90 days during their stay. This step helps to ensure that the service provider who runs the site is achieving milestones in their efforts to help residents.

The service provider for Northeast New Beginnings Community is the John Wesley Centers for Health/JWCH Institute, a private non-profit health agency with decades of experience in improving the health and well-being of underserved people in Los Angeles County. A double-wide “flex space” container will house administrative and service-provider offices at the site.

Construction of Northeast New Beginnings Community is expected to cost $4.75 million and be completed in the fall.   

T.A. Hendrickson, a native of Eagle Rock, is the editor of the Boulevard Sentinel and a former member of the Editorial Board of the New York Times.

T.A. Hendrickson
T.A. Hendrickson, a native of Eagle Rock, is the editor of the Boulevard Sentinel and a former member of the Editorial Board of the New York Times.

18 thoughts on “Construction starts in Cypress Park on interim housing for the homeless

  1. I hope this has better success than the stupid tiny homes project the idiot De Leon sponsored and laid his political claim to.

    1. Tiny Homes and the supportive services offered are a much needed respite for unhoused individuals who need assistance to prepare for permanent housing. Tiny Homes are available now throughout LA City.

    2. The tiny homes project would be looking better to many of us if there weren’t obvious drug deals suddenly happening out of vehicles along Eagle Vista Drive alongside the park, plus new tents right next door on CalTrans property. We deserve a clean and safe park, and only CD14 can do anything about it.

      1. If you suspect criminal activity notify LAPD and they will respond. LAPD is already monitoring Eagle Vista Drive. CalTrans has been notified about the tent on CalTrans property and they will respond. LAMC 41.18 only applies to LA CITY property.

        1. LAPD should have a permanent stakeout on Eagle Vista Drive, but there aren’t enough personnel to take care of it. The park is full of graffiti that wasn’t there before the new concentration of poverty and drug use that the Tiny Homes have brought to the area.

  2. This is another much needed temporary housing development that assists unhoused individuals to prepare for permanent housing. Since permanent housing is the goal, more low income permanent housing is needed.

  3. Any shelter at all–tiny home, modular, anything–is better than a tent on a sidewalk, especially when it includes food, hygiene, and social services. New permanent housing in L.A. is extremely expensive to build. How is it supposed to be paid for over a lifetime for a person who most likely can’t work?

    1. Regarding permanent housing, you may recall in 2016 Prop HHH passed by voters and is currently building permanent supportive and low income housing. Unfortunately that process has been slow which is why temporary housing is necessary to help get unhoused folks into shelter. Also Project Home Key has provided federal/state funding to acquire existing buildings for conversion into permanent low income and supportive housing. Permanent housing for formerly homeless individuals is being obtained through programs such as “lease-up” where housing navigators match prospective tenants with landlords throughout LA County. Housing vouchers similar to Section 8 are available to individuals who qualify so there are several ways that formerly unhoused individuals can get permanent housing. Temporary shelters such as the one in the article and Tiny Homes prepare individuals for permanent housing by helping them get their documents in order, and prepare applications for housing.

      1. 2016? Wasn’t that the good old boy with body guards HUIZAR.? There was many open options besides building ugly Apts. To much greed. Mayb back then the church on Ellenwood might have gone for the idea of having city pay rent n build shelters. Think at that time the lot across str was theirs. Like a halfway house. With trained ppl also living on site. Could be wrong about lot.
        And then u have the next greedy guy always kissing the old mayors……hand

  4. I agree. As expected, a whole new host of problems have developed. A lot of Eagle Rock residents are getting pretty tired of compromising their quality of life and children’s safety for these people! A lot of are fed up and angry. We had compassion, we have sympathy and now we are tired of this effect to our neighborhood.

      1. how many?
        and how do you claim to know what these “man” think?

  5. I contacted the ERNC and TERA as well. They in turn told me that they will notify both the local BLM chapter as well as a small vocal group that wants to defund the police. Problem is now solved.

    1. What did the ERNC and TERA say they would notify the BLM and defund-the-police people of?

      1. C.D. only mentioned “a small vocal group that wants to defund the police.” They’re not being defunded, but they have recruitment problems.

  6. I was being sarcastic. It was meant to say TERA and ERNC are groups that do nothing to support the actual quality of life for the “housed residents”!

  7. CD1 opponent against Gil Cedillo wants to totally defend police and get rid of all police. That’s plain stupid.
    Councilmember Gil Cedillo has done a lot of good for his district.

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