Making an Impact in Poway

For decades Poway was the most exclusive City in San Diego County. Poway's redevelopment project area -at 8,200 acres- covers most of the City. It is the largest project area in San Diego County and the 16th largest out of nearly 750 project areas in the state.

The Poway Redevelopment Agency received millions of tax increment dollars each year from its project area, at least 20 percent of which was required to be set aside in a separate Low and Moderate Income Housing Fund. Just as its name implies, this Housing Fund must be spent to develop housing which is occupied by and affordable to very low, low and moderate income people and families. For years, Poway failed to set aside the minimum 20 percent of tax increment. The money Poway did set aside was spent on street improvements throughout the City.

When long-term, low income Poway residents learned of these abuses, they sued to enforce the minimum requirements of State Community Redevelopment Law (CRL). With AHA as their counsel, the residents recovered over $9 million in underfunding and misexpenditures. Craig v. City of Poway, (1994) 28 Cal.App.4th 319. A subsequent suit was settled with Poway agreeing to build hundreds of new units permanently affordable to very low income seniors and families. As a result of these suits, Poway's meager stock of 60 affordable units has risen to nearly 600. These units have been built by local nonprofit developers with the help of money AHA recovered and development commitments AHA secured.

To learn more about Poway's 404 units of affordable, family housing including Park View Terrace (pictured here) click here.

To learn more about Poway's 179 affordable, senior units at Brookview Village, click here.

By enforcing minimum requirements of state law, AHA acts as a "private attorney general" to ensure that money designated by the State Legislature for affordable housing is set-aside and properly spent and that minimum affordable housing development obligations are met. AHA work creates opportunities for developers, both for- and non-profit, to help cities meet their community's and the region's critical need for affordable housing. The affordable housing created helps working families, seniors and others by providing them with decent and affordable homes.

To support the development of more affordable housing in your community, you can:

  • Make a donation to AHA.
  • Learn more about our region's need for affordable housing. Click on Land Use and Regional Growth and then Housing.
  • Join the San Diego Housing Federation.
  • Advocate for affordable housing development in your community. Contact your local planning and housing departments to get involved.