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Environment

National City Welcomes New Affordable Housing Complex

Apartment homes at National City development called Paradise Creek, April 18, 2017.
Christopher Maue
Apartment homes at National City development called Paradise Creek, April 18, 2017.
National City Welcomes New Affordable Housing Complex
National City officials celebrated an affordable housing project Tuesday that took years to come together.

National City officials celebrated an affordable housing project Tuesday that took years to come together.

The Paradise Creek development changed a contaminated urban plot of land into a community of affordable housing in an older part of National City.

"What's most important here is that it was the community that drove that change," said Carolina Martinez of the Environmental Health Coalition.

The environmental justice group pushed efforts to cleanup underground contamination and turn this old industrial plot of land into a state-of-the-art affordable housing complex.

The homes are near a trolley stop and residents will soon be able to enjoy a four-acre park along Paradise Creek.

"We're transforming the community from the ground up, literally from the ground up, changing the ground with the community and transforming it into homes, to healthy homes," Martinez said.

National City has plenty of demand for these homes. City officials received 3,000 applications for the affordable rental units.

Backers touted the project for the collaborative effort that spanned years but never stopped moving forward.

"Today, we see the bricks and mortar, which is a great thing, but this is really community development," said Bill Witte of Related California, an affordable housing developer.

The four-acre park and just over 90 more housing units will complete the project's second phase.