Excelerate Housing signals willingness to move Oak Rose affordable housing project in Elk Grove

Affordable housing developer Excelerate Housing Group has signaled some potential for compromise in a standoff over a proposed affordable housing project in Old Town Elk Grove.

The Long Beach-based company announced Monday it had presented the city with a list of terms and conditions to move the 67-unit supportive housing project to another location, two days before the Elk Grove City Council is scheduled to discuss the project again.

“We are hopeful that these conversations will be fruitful and that we can come to an agreement as we continue our efforts to build safe, affordable homes to benefit the many Elk Grove residents who desperately need housing,” Excelerate CEO Dana Trujillo said in the announcement sent by email.

But in the same announcement, Excelerate said it won’t be attending the Oct. 11 council meeting, though the council sent a letter requesting the company’s presence last month.

“We do not believe our attendance at the October 11 Elk Grove City Council meeting is appropriate, given these continuing good-faith negotiations, and the ongoing litigation over the unlawful discretionary review process the city relied on to reject the Oak Rose project,” Trujillo said. “While we hope to resolve this litigation and move forward with building permanent supportive housing in Elk Grove, in partnership with the city, we will not be able to accept the city’s invitation to appear on October 11.”

Mike Roth, a spokesman working with Excelerate, said the company would not comment beyond the announcement. An email sent to the city of Elk Grove seeking comment wasn’t immediately returned.

Oak Rose Apartments would be at 9252 Elk Grove Blvd., in the oldest part of the city. As permanent supportive housing, the project would provide housing for people who are unhoused or at risk of becoming unhoused, with resident services provided by Hope Cooperative.

With neighbors opposed to the project, the City Council voted against it in summer 2022, drawing lawsuits from both Excelerate and the state of California. The state attorney general’s office alleged that the city failed to follow laws passed in recent years meant to encourage housing production.

City staff and legal counsel advised the city to take up the project again last month, but again facing opposition and angry over Excelerate’s absence, the council voted Sept. 27 to continue the item to Oct. 11.

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