IRVINE, CA – Jamboree Housing Corporation, one of California’s largest community development organizations that specializes in affordable housing, has taken a major step towards implementing its long-term business diversification strategy with the launch of its Quality Design Company, Inc., a separate 501(c)(3) that provides in-house expertise and coordination to vendors involved in the design and construction of Jamboree’s developments.
Quality Design Company operates as part of Jamboree’s Development Group and was established to ensure enhanced design and construction standardization across the company’s property portfolio, as well as more cost-effective development solutions and improved sustainability in both its new and renovated properties. Jamboree currently has about $88 million in affordable housing projects in development and a $1 billion asset portfolio that includes the development of and/or ownership interest in more than 6,700 homes in more than 67 California communities.
“Quality Design Company concentrates our internal construction and design capabilities and is a key part of our longer term strategy to improve cost efficiencies, optimize performance, and maintain the highest levels of quality for all of our properties,” said Laura Archuleta, Jamboree president. “It also serves as a model of innovation for other new lines of business we may consider in our long-term strategy to diversify, expand operational horizons and strengthen our property portfolio.”
Archuleta said that as Jamboree plans for future growth into potential new services and products – including such project types as mixed-income, veterans housing and assisted living – as well as expansion of such existing product types as transit-oriented development and special needs housing – the Quality Design Company will work closely with vendors and consultants to ensure consistent building standards adopted by Jamboree are being utilized for all aspects of the company’s affordable housing developments.
“In the 23 years that we have sought to strengthen California communities by acquiring, building and managing affordable housing, we have gained considerable knowledge and expertise in all facets of multi- housing development,” Archuleta explained. “We believe our core competencies can be effectively transferred to such enterprises as design services and construction management, project consulting, financial services, property management, resident services, and the pursuit of new development opportunities with market-rate builders.”
Archuleta said that demonstrating Jamboree’s corporate commitment to quality and performance in its strategic programming will also be key in securing financing for future developments. “We believe that having a long-term, thoughtfully formulated business strategy will resonate with potential funding sources such as banks, private investors and other debt and equity providers.” she said. “This is especially critical today with the loss of redevelopment financing statewide.”
To assist Jamboree in identifying and assessing new business avenues to complement its development and management activities, the company last year retained housing industry strategist Rebecca Clark as Jamboree’s Director of Innovations. She works closely with Archuleta, her executive team and the company’s board of directors, to determine new opportunities such as the Quality Design Company that best serve Jamboree as it seeks to expand its future development operations with such fee-based services as construction management, project consulting, and design.
“Working with Becky, we will expand and refine our short- and long-term strategies to diversify while continuing to grow our core business of affordable housing acquisition, development and management,” Archuleta noted.
Prior to establishing her Bay Area consulting firm, Clark Consulting Group, Clark was executive vice president with San Francisco-based BRIDGE Housing. During her career, she has served in top management positions with other leading affordable housing developers with responsibilities that range from chief executive officer to director of construction management and housing development.
“I believe Jamboree’s sterling reputation – coupled with its diverse experience, financial strength, broad knowledge base and management resources – will serve it well as it seeks new opportunities to complement its development activities,” said Clark. “Without redevelopment, affordable housing developers are in a new world and need to prepare now for the future.”
Archuleta said another avenue that Jamboree is pursuing is the acquisition and rehabilitation of older properties that can be transformed into new affordable housing. The company has already acquired and rehabilitated several such properties including The Studios at Hotel Berry in Downtown Sacramento, an historic hotel built in the late 1920s; Collage Apartments in Long Beach, a previously blighted multi-housing complex; and Grove Park in the Buena Clinton neighborhood of Garden Grove, and it has other projects in planning.
“We believe that acquiring and rehabilitating marginal housing stock could provide significant opportunities to create new affordable housing throughout California,” said Archuleta. “The funding necessary to acquire and renovate these properties is within reach of most local governments and the benefits for the community and its residents are substantial.”