Calif. Measure to Revitalize Jordan Downs and Nickerson Gardens Communities in Watts Approved by State Assembly

SACRAMENTO, Calif. /California Newswire/ — The California State Assembly today approved AB 1641 by Assistant Speaker pro Tempore Isadore Hall, III (D- Los Angeles), which would designate the communities of Jordan Downs and Nickerson Gardens in Watts as redevelopment areas necessary to begin a planned $5 billion revitalization of the area. The measure was approved on a 46 to 26 vote.

The Jordan Downs and Nickerson Gardens Housing Projects have provided over 1700 units of affordable housing in the community of Watts, South Los Angeles for over 50 years. Originally built as semi-permanent housing for workers during World War II, the developments were converted to public housing in 1955. Since its conversion, the housing projects have suffered from decades of disrepair and neglect, endangering the health and safety of the thousands of residents that have called these communities home.

In 2008, the City of Los Angeles launched a $5 billion revitalization project to replace Jordan Downs and Nickerson Gardens with a mixed income, mixed use, transit oriented, affordable housing development. Because Jordan Downs and Nickerson Gardens are in such a state of disrepair, they cannot be rehabilitated simply through private enterprise and need a redevelopment designation in order to facilitate the planned revitalization.

“The City and County of Los Angeles have invested significant resources and have made long term commitments to create jobs, develop new housing and improve the overall quality of life for residents throughout the community of Watts,” said Assemblymember Hall. “AB 1641 is an important tool necessary to continue the revitalization of Watts, maintain the affordability of housing for current residents and provide needed jobs, new housing and business opportunities for residents throughout Los Angeles County.”

AB 1641 now goes to the State Senate for further consideration.

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