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AMCAL Named 6th Top Affordable Housing Developer

Las Ventanas apartments playground area with children and adult

Affordable Housing Finance Magazine published its top 50 affordable housing developers list in May 2021, and AMCAL came in at #6 in the nation having 1,514 construction starts in 2020, and an anticipated 687 completions.

According to AHF, affordable housing developers were able to continue building, despite all the uncertainties and disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. AMCAL was one of them. AHF also reported that while posting impressive numbers, developers faced extraordinary challenges during the pandemic, from delays in construction to increased deal scrutiny, from all-time high lumber prices to rent delinquencies across their portfolios. In addition, they were called on to meet the increasing needs of their residents.

AMCAL is proud to have been building affordable housing for more than 40 years, and is still going strong with an impressive pipeline of projects under construction and under development in 2022.

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AMCAL Wins Grand Award for Student Housing Community

The Grad San Jose front elevation of a tall building

AMCAL won the Grand Award for best student housing or faculty housing in the 2021 PCBC Gold Nugget Award competition.

The PCBC Gold Nugget Awards are the oldest and most prestigious design awards in the nation, recognizing those who build and improve communities through exceptional concepts in design, planning and development. The winners are selected by a panel of top industry experts who reviewed nearly 600 entries. The winners showcase the most exciting trends in design, planning and building.

PCBC is the largest home building tradeshow in the Western United States and is dedicated to advancing the art, science and business of housing. Sponsored by the California Building Industry Association and endorsed by the Leading Builders of America—whose membership includes many of the largest public and private home builders in the country

The Grad is a new, off-campus, purpose-built student housing community designed specifically to serve students of San José State University located in the heart of Silicon Valley. The Grad is a 19-story mixed-use residential tower adjacent to a 4-story parking garage topped with an expansive recreation deck. The Grad’s striking high-rise design and unprecedented abundance of amenities is unique in San Jose’s urban center.  The community is the first high-rise student housing building and among the very few built in the U.S.  The Grad San Jose won Silicon Valley Business Journal’s 2019 Award for Best Market Rate Residential Project and received attention from the Silicon Valley Business Journal for being the 8th largest construction project in San Jose ranked by square feet. 

PCBC judges reaction to The Grad: “WOW, wish I lived in a college dorm like that! Amongst top contenders in this category, the architecture was interwoven into the fabric of the downtown environment of mid-to-high rise buildings. Without compromising the integrity of the use and purpose, dorm rooms and amenity areas have a ‘resort-hotel’ vibe. A place where you would not miss being away from home.”

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AMCAL affordable housing expert participates on western U.S. regional panel

Photo of Darin Hansen

Our VP of Forward Planning and Entitlements, Darin Hansen, participated in a developer/owner panel addressing the state of affordable housing development in the western U.S. region hosted by Western Real Estate Business. The panel addressed questions surrounding: “What is the outlook for the affordable housing sector in the western states?”

You can access a recording of the panel discussion on the Western Real Estate Business website.

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Las Ventanas in Long Beach, CA, strives for LEED Platinum Certification

Artist's rendering of Las Ventanas

Las Ventanas Features Affordable Family Apartments, Close Proximity to the Blue Line, and is striving for LEED Platinum Certification

AMCAL Multi-Housing, Inc., a national leader in the development of affordable housing, is about to complete construction on Las Ventanas Apartments, an affordable mixed-use housing development near the Blue Line stop on Pacific Coast Highway in Long Beach, California, that is striving to be certified as LEED Platinum.

Las Ventanas, located at 1795 Long Beach Blvd., features 102 apartments with 1, 2 and 3-bedrooms affordable to individuals and families earning between 20% to 80% of the area median income (AMI). LA County’s “Homes for Health” program has reserved apartments for 15 special needs homeless households.

Las Ventanas sits on a 1.01–acre site with a four-story building and includes street-level commercial space. The community’s transit-accessible location and infrastructure improvements provide residents access to public transportation, parks, markets, education institutions and retail, which are all located within short distances.

The community is striving for LEED Platinum certification. LEED for Homes is a national, voluntary, rating system administered by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). USGBC is a non-profit that promotes the design and construction of high-performance green buildings and encourages the adoption of sustainable practices. LEED-certified homes are more durable, use less energy and water, and provide improved indoor air quality resulting in reduced utility bills and increased occupant comfort.

For a project to earn LEED for Homes certification, it must meet requirements in eight different environmental qualities: 1) Sustainable sites, 2) Water efficiency, 3) Energy and atmosphere, 4) Materials and resources, 5) Indoor environmental quality, 6) Locations and linkages, 7) Awareness and education, and 8) Innovation in design.

The Las Ventanas community exceeds California’s Energy Efficient Standards for Residential and Nonresidential Buildings which is enhanced by Solar Thermal for Domestic Hot Water, Solar PV and Energy Star lighting and Bathroom fans. Each kitchen is being furnished with a stove-oven and a garbage disposal. To help residents minimize expenses, AMCAL has installed ENERGY STAR® appliances including a refrigerator and a dishwasher. All apartments have a patio or balcony for private outdoor space, storage, and modern amenities for living.

To improve indoor air quality, AMCAL used interior paint with low volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Apartment interiors include modern vinyl Floor Score® planking and carpeting in bedrooms. AMCAL used the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Green Label low-VOC carpet, pad and adhesive, which help to reduce VOCs and emissions, and contribute to the growing use of recycled content for building materials.

To reduce water usage, xeriscape landscaping with a managed irrigation system was planted, and low-flow water toilets, faucets and showerheads were installed.

For more information on LEED for Homes and USGBC, visit USGBC’s website.

Some of the green features unique to the community are:

  • 75% of construction waste diverted from landfills
  • 5% of total parking area dedicated to low-emitting and fuel-efficient vehicles
  • High-efficiency fixtures and ENERGY STAR® appliances
  • High-efficiency irrigation system
  • Low-VOC emitting paints and flooring
  • Low-flow interior water fixtures and toilets

“Las Ventanas’ high quality look and design will contribute to improving the neighborhood and provide much needed affordable family housing to the community,” said Percival Vaz, CEO of AMCAL. “We are excited to unveil Las Ventanas with its many environmentally sustainable features and look forward to its positive contribution to the Long Beach community.”

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AMCAL affordable housing expert participates on panel

Photo of Arjun Nagarkatti

AMCAL President, Arjun Nagarkatti, participated in a developer/owner panel addressing the question: “What is the Outlook for the Affordable Housing Sector in Texas?” hosted by Texas Real Estate Business. The panel (second hour of the webinar) explored expanding markets, affordable housing tax credit coalition and bond cap restraints, collections, reserve requirements and barriers to workforce and affordable housing.

A recording of the session was posted on the website of Real Estate Business Online. Visit that website to find a recording of the session.

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AMTEX Breaks Ground on Houston Development

Artist's rendering of Richcrest Apartments

AMTEX recently broke ground on Richcrest, an affordable housing development under construction in Houston.

Richcrest Apartments is a 288-unit affordable rental housing community containing a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units for individuals and families. The development will maintain designations for a variety of income levels, targeted to be affordable for families earning between 30% and 60% of the Area Median Income.

Richcrest Apartments will serve families and their needs by providing high-quality, affordable housing with modern amenities and on-site services. All units will offer contemporary living for residents. Amenities will include balconies/patios overlooking the shared outdoor space and modernized kitchens and bathrooms to provide the most comfortable living environment for families.

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AMCAL Secures $49 Million in Construction Financing for Katy, TX Project

Artist's rendering of Katy apartments club house

AMCAL Equities, LLC, has landed $49 million in construction financing for the development of Katy Apartments, a multifamily community located in Katy, Texas.

Greystone provided the loan under HUD’s 221 (d) (4) program. Shana Daby, a managing director at Greystone, originated the debt, structured as a non-recourse, fixed-rate construction loan that converts to a 40-year, fully-amortizing permanent loan when the property stabilizes and finances roughly 85 percent of the total project costs. 

The article originally appeared in the Commercial Observer. Visit that news website to read more of the article.

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The Grad San Jose Ranks #8 on List of Top Construction Projects

Silicon Valley Business Journal Top 8 Construction Projects list

The Grad San Jose was recently ranked the #8 largest construction project by size in San Jose by the Silicon Valley Business Journal. The Grad San Jose is AMCAL Equities, LLC’s newest student housing project near San Jose State University (SJSU).

This article originally appeared in the Silicon Valley Business Journal. Visit that website to read more of the article.

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Forbes Magazine features AMCAL’s newest student housing project–The Grad San Jose–as students gear up for a new normal on campus

The Grad apartments living area

Veteran developer AMCAL Equities, LLC, is poised to complete The Grad San Jose in August — just in time for students who will be returning to SJSU in the Fall.

The Grad sits across the street from San Jose State University and is the first high-rise student housing building in San Jose, California. The Grad is a joint venture project with Swenson.

The mixed-use, 260-unit building will include apartments and student amenities. Most floor plans are designed to give students their own private bathrooms. One four-bedroom floor plan will include three bathrooms.

The Grad San Jose will include a three-story parking deck and an amenities deck above the parking deck on the back side of the high-rise building. The amenities deck will include a building with an exercise center, a swimming pool with sundeck, sports courts, picnic area and landscaping. The first floor of the high-rise will include 14,750-square-feet of retail space.

The Grad San Jose was featured in July 2020 in an article in Forbes Magazine. You can read more of the article at that news website.