Pacifica Playa del Sol affordable housing
Pacifica at Playa del Sol in Otay Mesa is an example of new affordable housing. Courtesy of the San Diego Housing Commission

Mayor Todd Gloria on Monday will officially launch his “Bridge to Home” initiative to build nearly 700 affordable housing units throughout San Diego.

Administered by the city’s Economic Development Department, the program will provide gap financing assistance to builders of affordable housing.

Seven projects totaling 662 apartments are planned for San Ysidro, downtown, the East Village, City Heights and Rancho Bernardo.

Nearly 200 of the homes would be reserved for people experiencing homelessness, including 35 for those who struggle with severe mental illness.

Funding will come from the city’s Low and Moderate Income Housing Asset Fund, the federal Community Development Block Grant program, and the state’s Permanent Local Housing Allocation program, which was created through Senate Bill 2, authored by Senate President pro Tem Toni G. Atkins in 2017.

Gloria announced the housing program during his State of the City address on Jan. 12.

“The shortage of affordable homes is splitting up families, making it harder for our businesses to attract and retain workers, and threatening to deprive our region of the talented young people we work so hard to educate in our world-class universities,” he said.

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.