Forty-eight formerly homeless families now have permanent residences after the brand new Talisa Apartments development opened in Panorama City.
The supportive housing development features 4 one-bedroom and 44 two-bedroom units on a lot of more than 51,000 square feet. Residents who will call the area home are all experiencing homelessness and earning less than 30% of the median income in the area.
The facility will be serviced by LA Family Housing, an organization which provides resources and solutions for Los Angeles residents struggling with homelessness. The project was developed by the organization alongside Domus Development and the complex was designed by FSY architects.
A grand opening ceremony was held Thursday and featured local leaders and new residents.
Diana Smith, one of the new residents at Talisa Apartments, expressed her newfound sense of optimism, saying she felt in control of her life for the first time ever.
“I love seeing my kids finally feel happy, safe, and relaxed after so many years of uncertainty,” Smith said. “Finally, instead of worrying about where we’re going to sleep next month, I get to think about what comes next for my family.”
Talisa Apartments was conceived as a response to the shortage of permanent supportive housing options for families experiencing homelessness. It was specifically designed to offer a “nurturing, tranquil environment” to families in transition.
The complex features a range of amenities to build community and relationships among residents, including a playground, a community garden and a barbecue area. Residents also have access to a computer lab and laundry facilities.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Lindsey P. Horvath praised the development, calling it a “beautiful and shining example of an affordable housing community.”
“Bringing supportive housing and services to communities experiencing homelessness in the San Fernando Valley continues to be a top priority, and we are making sure that families are being met with the care that they need,” Horvath said.
Officials in Los Angeles County say the region is dealing with more than 75,000 people who are experiencing homelessness and spend their nights on the streets. In addition to the living amenities, residents will also have access to comprehensive case management, education and employment resources, life skills training and physical and mental health services.
Addressing the homelessness crisis and building more homes is among the priorities of local leaders. More supportive housing has been approved in the past five years than in the previous three decades, officials said.
Stephanie Klasky-Gamer is President and CEO of LA Family Housing. She called the opening of Talisa Apartments a joyous day worth of celebration.
“With a roof over their heads and a door they can close, they can begin the process of healing,” Klasky-Gamer said.
For more on the Talisa Apartments, click here.