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Irvine-based Jamboree begins work on Hotel Berry

The nonprofit is redeveloping the historic Sacramento property into an affordable housing development.

By Brandon RussellPublished: February 24, 2011 09:36 AM

Irvine-based Jamboree Housing Corp. today will begin the renovation and modernization of Sacramento's historic Hotel Berry into a transit-oriented, rental community for low-income residents.

Jamboree develops, acquires, renovates and manages affordable housing for families, seniors and those with special needs throughout the state. The new project, which is being completed in partnership with the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency, is the nonprofit firm's first mixed-used development in the city and its 11th in the county.

The now-vacant property first opened in the city's business district in 1929 and was originally part of a hotel system developed by B.S. & Harry Berry of San Francisco. Upon completion of the revitalization project in 2012, the six-story property – dubbed the Studios at Hotel Berry – will feature 103 single-room-occupancy studios, a manager's unit and retail space on the ground floor, where a family-owned convenience store will return to the property. The studios will be available to individuals earning between 30 and 45 percent of the area median income.

The redevelopment offers a number of benefits to the city, and comes during a time of renewed interest in local culture and heritage, according to Jamboree.

“The Hotel Berry restoration represents an exciting and growing trend: the reawakening of historical and cultural interests in mature communities across America,” said Laura Archuleta, president of Jamboree. “Properties such as the Hotel Berry offer unique opportunities to reconnect to a sense of place and perspective.”

In addition, Jamboree and city officials hope the project will breathe new life into the downtown area.

“This restoration aligns perfectly with one of our major priorities for the coming year – the revitalization of our downtown core,” said Kevin Johnson, mayor of Sacramento. “Because of this and other developments, we’re finally making legitimate progress.”

The project also is expected to have a positive impact on the city's downtown resident population, which is dominated by single-person renters – many of whom have annual household incomes under $25,000, according to Jamboree.

The development will feature access to a community kitchen, dining area, meeting areas, laundry facilities, lounge and recreation room, among other amenities. Each studio will feature a private bathroom, ceiling fan and kitchenette, and will include water-saving household fixtures, Carpet and Rug Institute Green-Label carpeting and low-VOC interior paint, while retaining all awnings, historical marquees and signage.

“High-quality affordable housing is good for the environment, the economy and local communities," said Archuleta, "and this development will exceed our most rigorous standards in each category."

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