New Housing for Low-Income Seniors Opens on Fairfax

affordable housing, senior housing, witkin center
The Janet L. Witkin Center at 937 Fairfax Ave. in West Hollywood.

The Janet L. Witkin Center, an affordable housing development for seniors, formally opened its doors at a ceremony yesterday.

The Witkin Center, at 937 Fairfax Ave. near Romaine, offers 17 housing units for very low-income and chronically homeless seniors. Two of the Center’s units will be provided for seniors with vision or mobility issues. Six of the units will house formerly homeless seniors. A full-time service coordinator will be on-site as a resource to residents.

The Witkin Center is owned and managed by Affordable Living for the Aging, a nonprofit organization founded in 1978 to provide options for the elderly to live independent and productive lives. Construction of the center was made possible by $1.6 million in funding from California Bank & Trust. The Center is named for Affordable Living for the Aging’s founder.


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Mike Dolan
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Mike Dolan

With all due respect, I must apologize to the memory of Janet L. Witkin and her vision for the needs of seniors. West Hollywood is a better place and perfect fit for the center that is named in her honor. The City’s demographics, housing needs, revenue resources (property tax-very low) make the Janet L. Witkin Center a perfect fit. West Hollywood can and will be a better place whenever very-low, low, and moderate are included in the City’s inclusionary Housing Program and West Hollywood Community Housing Corps. developments. Due to tax credits at state and federal levels, moderate is often… Read more »

Mike Dolan
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Mike Dolan

@Holt: A soapbox speaker! Yawn… Somehow I knew I’d touch a nerve.

Brian Holt
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Brian Holt

Dolan: don’t be weak. Stand by what u said, or better yet, what ur really saying. You’re parsing words: your use of the word “always” indicates mandatory. As in this instance, when discussing housing laws and development requirements, one doesn’t “Always” include anything without it having to be mandated as such. And ironically, if you had used your critical thinking skills you would have followed that I was referring to your submission and I quote (not paraphrase) “that we always include moderate income in large developements.” And then you go onto to agree with me after the fact by allowing… Read more »

Tom Smart
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Tom Smart

I totally agree with Mike, Lynn & Rudolf—–and good thing City Hall also agrees!!!

Mike Dolan
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Mike Dolan

@Brian Holt: “paraphrasing,” now that is really stretching my statement but completely wrong. So don’t reword what you think I said. I spoke of moderate incomes to always be included in every large mixed-use development. There are 4000 people on the closed waiting list for very-low and low so yes, its a must and only a drop in the bucket but I did not say in every large development only its a must (where applicable) you used the word “mandatory” and “all housing development big or small.” Stop projecting and read using critical thinking. @WehoFan: What does your last comment… Read more »

Brian Holt
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Brian Holt

Rudolph: I love the Witkin Center and what she has done. I support it and support more projects just like it. I also like that it utilized private capital and did not solely rely on the govt. I believe a community is best served when business supports those that support them – in a myriad of ways from sales to tax breaks to simply giving back. That said, I was commenting on Dolan’s notion that we should (paraphrasing here) always find a way to incorporate low income into large developments. I disagree with the “always.” While I agree West Hollywood… Read more »

WehoFan
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WehoFan

@mikedolan What’s with the name-calling? Also, I “don’t qualify to live here”? That’s a strange thing to say. Who elected you? You can’t expect people to pay thousands of dollars to move into a new development when someone else gets to lease that same unit for free. That’s unsustainable. Do you pay property taxes to support these low income units? Because I sure do. You should be thanking me and my fellow home-owning West Hollywood residents for supporting these projects. PS: Try using less exclamation points. It weakens your argument. Cheers.

Rudolf Martin
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Rudolf Martin

I completely agree with Mike Dolan and Lynn, this building looks better than some of the oversized developments and we should encourage this kind of development in our city. There always will be plenty of housing for “hard-working residents who pay thousands of dollars in rent each month” and if they resent living in a diverse city they have plenty of less diverse areas to move to. Yes, the OC is one of them. WeHoFan and Brian Holt, I doubt you are seriously suggesting we should NOT allow a nonprofit that provides housing for low income seniors, blind, homeless or… Read more »

Mike Dolan
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Mike Dolan

@WehoFan: You are so transparent! Who are the “Many in our city?” You, in a room of mirrors? You represent exactly what Weho was not founded on or for! You can take your gated community mentality, self-interest are in the minority in our City. Let me guess, Right Wing, Conservative. Your selfish needs above all others with no consideration for the Human Condition. Yes, I know I’m right! Just to clarify, I did not say the City funded the Janet Witkin Center but was referring to West Hollywood’s fundamental principal of inclusion. If you reread the article, you don’t qualify… Read more »

Brian Holt
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Brian Holt

@wehofan: here here. Last time I checked this a capitalist economy not socialist. My tax dollars – which are plenty – should be better allocated to assist the aged. Development for mid-low income housing needn’t be attached to every new housing development.

WehoFan
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WehoFan

@MikeDolan Speak for yourself and please preach your political agenda elsewhere. Many in our city don’t agree with your insistence that all developments include very-low income tenants. You cant expect hard-working residents to pay thousands of dollars in rent each month only to have the guy living next door paying absolutely nothing for a similar unit. Also, if you reread the article you will see that the project was funded by California Bank & Trust. A private organization. Not by the city.

Mike Dolan
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Mike Dolan

Absolutely! This is just a small drop in a huge bucket. The need for this type of project and inclusionary housing for all levels of income must be incentivized with small and large mixed-use developers. We need to creatively come up with a way, as a City, to always include moderate income (as detailed in the inclusionary housing program) in large developments.

This City was built by moderate income households and is our backbone. Very low and low is a must. We cannot allow for income inequality to be West Hollywood.

Great job on this project. Keep them coming!