Nearly 100 neighbors in Oakland and Berkeley – currently living on the street or in emergency housing – will soon have permanent, private, and dignified housing thanks to two Homekey awards for BACS projects: Golden Bear Homes and Piedmont Place.
“Today, right now, you have neighbors on the street. Community members who are not different, they are just not housed. And thanks to this historic investment, there will be 89 fewer neighbors who are outdoors instead of indoors,” said Jamie Almanza, MBA, BACS CEO. “The BACS magic is blended housing and supportive services, rooted in expertise built across 70 years of doing whatever it takes to solve seemingly impossible problems.”
This is the result of community advocates making their voices heard at neighborhood gatherings and city council meetings; of individual neighbors signing up to donate and volunteer before the sites even open; of Governor Newsom’s leadership in creating and funding the Homekey initiative; of California taxpayers for making such bold initiatives possible; and of local Oakland and Berkeley leadership for making this dream come true.
Golden Bear Homes is located in the vibrant and well-connected West Berkeley neighborhood, a short distance to the North Berkeley BART Station, downtown Berkeley, University of California at Berkeley and many neighborhood amenities, services and employment opportunities. Potential tenants at Golden Bear Homes will come through Alameda County’s Coordinated Entry process for supportive housing, and residents will be matched with units beginning in early summer. Golden Bear Homes is a unique collaboration funded by the State of California Homekey Program, City of Berkeley matching funds and operating subsidy, and Alameda County Health Care Services.
- Daily Cal – City of Berkeley awarded $16.2M to fund Homekey project (April 2022)
- Berkeleyside – The Golden Bear Hotel will become permanent housing for homeless residents (December 2021)
Piedmont Place is located between the Piedmont Avenue and Uptown neighborhoods of Oakland, a short distance from Grand Lake, Kaiser Permanente Oakland, and the MacArthur BART station, as well as BACS’ Towne House Wellness & Housing Hub on Oakland Ave and our headquarters on 40th Street. There is a two-bedroom unit that will end homelessness for a currently unhoused family, and the remaining 43 units will house single adults. Piedmont Place is funded by the State of California Homekey Program, City of Oakland matching funds and operating subsidy, and Alameda County Health Care Services.
In the media:
- Mercury News – Oakland wins $14.8 million grant to turn hotel into homeless housing (March 2022)
- Oaklandside – City Council sets stage for new supportive housing, RV park in 2022 (December 2021)
BACS and Memar Properties Inc. will co-own the properties; BACS will provide property management and supportive services (including employment support, benefits assistance, behavioral health care, connections to primary health care, and more). Both sites will have plug-in induction cooktops (energy-efficient and low fire risk), units that are accessible for physical, hearing, and vision accessibility, ADA-compliance across all public areas, and new counseling and community rooms. Our goal is to get people housed as quickly as possible.