Facing a regional affordable housing shortage of "catastrophic levels," as leaders say, the city of Roseville is poised to add some 200 apartment units for working folks.
Roseville currently has three affordable housing projects in the works, at various stages of development.
Two of them are planned for the city's Historic Old Town; Each of those projects is still in the preliminary stages. Construction is already underway on the third project, Mercy Housing, which is located in Roseville's downtown - at 623 Vernon Street. That complex is set to open in the spring and will have "58 affordable one, two, and three-bedroom apartments" available, according to a banner hanging outside the work site. For more information, it said, people can call 916-472-2962.
"Although it says 'affordable housing,' this is really 'workforce housing,'" Roseville Development Services Director Kevin Payne explained to ABC10 News. "These are folks that have income levels that are teachers, firemen, policemen, for that matter. These are folks that are in those income brackets that are struggling to get single-family homes."
One of the two affordable housing projects planned for Historic Old Town is called Junction Crossing and will create 80 new units.
The developer, St. Anton Communities, promises "these homes will be luxurious, and the rents are approximately half of current market rents," division president Ardie Zahedani said.
In addition, Zahedani said, “We want to put housing next to jobs, shopping and public transit...We’re hoping to attract workforce tenants…like teachers, new firefighters and others who aren’t currently earning high incomes.”
The developer hopes to start construction "in early 2018 and welcome new tenants in late 2019." The project has been in the works since 2010, when the city originally asked for proposals.
Positive change, however, can come with growing pains.
It's a classic condundrum: As a business district grows, it becomes more attractive to visitors and residents alike, meaning more cars.
Michael Bergland is a manager at Roseville's Old Town Pizza, which feels parking woes.
"Friday, Saturday nights, especially, are quite a pain for us. I believe, as a business here, we would probably do much better if we had more parking," he said. "Sometimes we have people that will call and order takeout instead because they can't find a parking spot or delivery because they can't find a parking spot, so that hurts the dine-in business as well."
Old Town Pizza has its own dedicated parking lot, but Bergland said customers of nearby businesses will often use those spaces.
With plans for two new apartment complexes in Historic Old Town, some business owners there have expressed concerns that the parking situation will only get worse.
That's especially concerning for Junction Crossing, which is planned for a site that is currently a parking lot and was once considered for a new parking structure.
However, Zahedani said, Junction Crossing's plans call for 86 parking spaces, 31 of which will be "set aside for the general public."
The city of Roseville conducted a parking study of Historic Old Town, which was presented to City Council last month.
The report says, for now, Old Town has just enough parking - 1,532 spaces - to serve the businesses there, "that the existing parking that's there is, although it is heavily used during the peak timeframe, that it is adequate to support the businesses," Payne said.
It acknowledges that continued growth will require additional spaces.
City council does plan on building two new parking structures in Old Town, to accommodate an increase in residents, businesses and commuters. One will be erected at the train depot site, Payne said. The other was supposed to be built where plans now put Junction Crossing - 120 Pacific Street - but may now go in behind the old Barker Hotel, beside Union Pacific operations.
Roseville's parking study also asks city council to consider more immediate parking solutions in Historic Old Town, including adding more on-street parking and surface-level parking.
For now, however, people may just have to walk a few blocks to grab a meal on a Friday or Saturday night.
Historic Old Town will also see an increase in traffic in coming years as the city expands its round-trip rail service to Sacramento from once a day, currently; to three times a day, in phase 1; to, ultimately 10 round-trips per day.
"The City has been working with the Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (CCJPA) for a number of years on their plans to expand train service from Rosevile to Sacramento," the report says.
Read the report for yourself on page 265 of this PDF presented to City Council.