Green, Transit- Friendly and Affordable

Nonprofit affordable housing developer Jamboree Housing Corporation is a leader in supportive, green, transit-friendly development and is recognized as Green Home Builder magazine’s Developer of the Year

By Genevieve Smith
Photography by

     Established in 1990, nonprofit builder and developer Jamboree Housing Corporation has steadily risen to the top tier of their industry with a simple mission of “delivering high quality affordable housing and services that transform lives and strengthen communities.” This year, they celebrate the addition of three more award-winning developments to their $1+ billion asset portfolio, as well as being named Green Home Builder magazine’s Developer of the Year for 2016. But from humble beginnings as a small Irvine, Calif. nonprofit, how did they get here?

It all started with a belief in community. As their website states: “We believe in the power of community to bring hope home to those starting out or starting over.” To that end, Jamboree builds award-winning, LEED-certified housing that people can afford in close proximity to public transport, and then provides supportive programs and services to help instill both personal accomplishment and community pride in those who find themselves calling a Jamboree development home.

In order to do so, the company leverages all available resources. That rather large, aforementioned portfolio is combined with strategic funding sources to provide solid financing. Jamboree has had large success in winning competitive allocations of scarce low-income tax credits through the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee (TCAC), as well as with attracting top tax credit investors. In-depth expertise brings together a nexus of funding sources allocated from the California Debt Limit Allocation Committee (CDLAC), Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB), U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD), along with conventional construction and permanent loans, and other local, state, and federal grants and financing. Gaps are then filled by public/private partnerships with master developers, design and construction professionals, with a multidisciplinary staff the key to successful property development.

The three-story, podium-style building features distinctive craftsman architecture and details design around a central courtyard.

Today, more than 18,750 residents call a Jamboree property home. This includes active seniors aging in place, veterans, and those living with a mental illness who are no longer homeless. Supported by Jamboree’s Community Impact Group’s community service partnerships, live/work strategies make shorter commutes and more time for family, exercise, or socializing, and after-school programs promote higher literacy and graduation rates. These programs provide quality onsite resident services and programs at little or no cost to residents.

As the 2016 Project of the Year award winner for the Homes Within Reach Awards, Rockwood Apartments in Anaheim, Calif. serves as the perfect example of what the team at Jamboree is capable of. A joint venture between Jamboree Housing and Innovative Housing Opportunities in partnership with the City of Anaheim, The County of Orange, and HUD, Rockwood was developed on a 1.83-acre, under-utilized infill site to provide quality housing for families—many of whom were homeless—and formerly homeless individuals living with mental illness.

Social, health, education and economic services at Rockwood include programs provided by such organizations as OC Asian Pacific Islander community Alliance, Western Youth Services, YMCA and Higher Ground mentoring programs.

As an important step in the fight to end homelessness, Jamboree sees Rockwood as an example of how to provide affordable housing as a foundation on which stable lives are built, from where it is possible to achieve good health, positive educational outcomes, and economic stability.

“Rockwood Apartments offers quality, permanent supportive housing with services vital to help formerly homeless residents and people living with mental illness,” said Laura Archuleta, president of Jamboree Housing. “The new community also underscores what can be achieved when the public and private sectors collaborate to solve what many may see as a seemingly unsolvable housing problem and, in doing so, open a new horizon of hope for families and people who struggle with life’s challenges.”

The Exchange, another award-winner for Jamboree Housing this year, was built as a public/private partnership between the City of El Monte, Jamboree and Grapevine Advisors, LLC, El Monte Gateway’s master developer. The availability of affordable housing in transit-rich areas is crucial to maintaining housing access for lower income residents.

Rockwood is also Jamboree’s first property built by its in-house construction entity, Quality Development and Construction, Inc. as part of the nonprofit’s Housing Development Group. Newman Garrison + Partners provided architectural services, JAG interiors was the interior designer, and the John Stewart Company is the property manager.

In keeping with the tenets under which Jamboree builds, Rockwood is sustainable in design and operation. It exceeds California’s Title 24 energy efficiency standards by at least 17.5 percent and is designed to achieve a LEED Gold rating, providing lowered utility costs and increased health for residents.

48 of the apartments serve families as part of the City of Anaheim’s Homeless Assistance Program, in collaboration with the Anaheim Union School District and the Illumination Foundation.

Its lot is adjacent to an elementary school and walking distance to green space at nearby Lincoln Park, as well as community services and public transportation. Rockwood is served by the Orange County Transportation Authority bus line with bus stops a brief walk from the property. OCTA operates more than 75 bus routes and 6,200 bus stops throughout Orange County including local community and express routes and service to Metrolink stations and the Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center (ARTIC).

Other award winning Jamboree projects this year include The Exchange at Gateway in El Monte (which actually competed with Rockwood for the ‘Homes Within Reach’ Project of the Year) and Clark Commons in Buena Park, Calif., which was the Project of the Year at the 2016 Affordable Housing Awards.

For more information on Jamboree Housing, visit

Genevieve Smith is the Editor at Green Home Builder magazine. She may be reached at