Agrihood: Affordable housing with urban farm opens in Santa Clara

A new affordable housing complex with an urban farm recently opened in Santa Clara. Agrihood is the largest of its kind in California and was built on a former state agricultural research site.  

City and county officials are calling this complex a multigenerational hub. It includes affordable housing units, an urban farm, and a new start for hundreds of our most vulnerable residents.  

"We are incorporating housing for different levels of income with a focus on older adults which is so vital," said Susan Ellenberg, Santa Clara County Board of supervisors president.

Agrihood, one of the latest projects funded by 2016’s Measure A Affordable Housing Bond, is now open in Santa Clara. The first group of residents moved in this summer and City and County officials held an opening ceremony late last month.  

"We hired Project for Public Spaces to come and have us imagine what this site would look like, with a working urban farm, couple with affordable housing for seniors and veterans," said Lisa Gillmor, Santa Clara mayor. 

The Core Companies was chosen as the master developer for Agrihood. The housing complex has vibrant murals on its 1.5 acres of open space and unique features like a stormwater capture system used to hydrate the farm.  

"But then to also have a farm that’s delivering fresh and healthy produce, to a senior population that we know has to make really difficult choices between paying rent, paying for prescription drugs or paying for healthy produce, it means everything," said Vince Cantore, Vice President of The Core Companies. 

Agrihood has 165 affordable units for seniors 55 and older, including 54 permanent supportive housing units and supportive services. This woman says her uncle just moved into Agrihood, and she has high hopes that it’ll be a great place for him to live.  

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"It’s a nice place, the people are nice, everybody’s just grateful to have a second chance at life, and they’re all looking for furniture, food, items and everything that they can possibly have donated to them," said Stevisha Bowers, of Santa Clara.   

Bowers says it's a good reminder that some people will still need help getting settled into a new home. If you'd like to help, please contact Agrihood

Agrihood also says it’ll offer over 50 community events each year.