Affordable Senior Housing 2018-09-14T19:49:37+00:00

The Need for Affordable Senior Housing by Davis Residents

September 18, 2018

Dear Supporters of Affordable Senior Housing in Davis:

You are someone who has shown an interest in the proposed affordable senior housing at West Davis Active Adult Community. We need you to take immediate action to support Measure L which creates an additional 150 apartments of affordable senior housing in Davis.

The No on L Committee is engaged in an active campaign which makes highly misleading and untruthful attacks on the proposed affordable senior housing. If No wins there will be no new affordable senior housing in Davis for years. You may not have written before but this time you must act immediately.

See our factual refutations of the No campaign at http://westdavisactive.com/affordable-senior-housing/

Here is what we ask you to do and in this order;

  • Immediately, send a short one or two sentence ‘Letter to the Editor’ to the Davis Enterprise. These letters have high value in the Davis community. One short sentence is best such as; “I support Measure L with its 150 new affordable apartments for low income Davis seniors.” Check out our Op-Eds in the Enterprise and our efforts at http://westdavisactive.com/affordable-senior-housing/. It takes over a week for letters to get published so write now.
  • Although you are required to put your name and address and telephone number on the letter none of that info is published. It is just a way for the Enterprise to know you are a real person. There is a 350 word limit but short is best.  Send to, Sebastian Onate, Editor at sonate@davisenterprise.net. Bcc a copy to Bill Powell, President, DSHC willpowell123@yahoo.com and David Thompson, Neighborhood Partners, dthompcoop@aol.com
  • Email your letter and this request to all your friends who care about affordable senior housing. Ask them to write a similar Letter to the Editor.

It is eighteen years since the last affordable senior community was brought forward by our two groups in Davis. Help defeat the No campaign against seniors in need in our community. With 225 on the waiting list at ERC we cannot wait another eighteen years for affordable housing.


Bill Powell, President                                                 David Thompson

Delta Davis Senior Housing Communities            Neighborhood Partners, LLC

willpowell123@yahoo.com                                       dthompcoop@aol.com

We have never seen such an exaggerated litany of attacks against much needed affordable housing for low income seniors in Davis. This is from the perspective of our combined 60 years of serving the needs of low income seniors in Davis.  The future needs of low income seniors in Davis should not become the cannon fodder of the No campaign in their false war on the facts about affordable senior housing. We believe Davis seniors deserve better and that Davis voters deserve an honest debate.

So, as long time Davis senior housing providers, we are taking on two issues of the No on Measure L representative – keeping in mind that Winston Churchill once said:

“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its trousers on.”

Issue I.


Opponents vehemently argue, “there is no guarantee that the required low-income housing will ever be built.”

The statement above is highlighted on an eight foot wide No on Measure L Banner

Why make this untrue and factually unsupported accusation that the senior housing may never be built?

Over a nearly 30 year history 1,100 apartments, housing over 3,000 people, valued at over 200 million dollars have been built on the 33 parcels set aside for affordable housing in Davis. See the truth at https://cityofdavis.org/residents/affordable-housing-program.

To assert to the Davis voter that affordable housing will never be built on this specific one piece of land is a vacuous example of false electioneering. With 3.7 acres of donated free land, free infrastructure and improvements and substantial state and federal funding sources available to Davis Senior Communities of course this campus will be built.

To claim otherwise is to go against thirty years of proven reality that are real homes to over 3,000 low income Davis residents and neighbors. See the City’s long list of affordable rental housing at https://cityofdavis.org/home/showdocument?id=3264.

Please beware of other claims about affordable housing being made by the No representative.

Issue II.

“this is fundamentally different than every other large development in town in the past 10 years where the developer contributed not only the land but also built the low income housing…No on Measure L representative

We have pointed out that this statement is not even close to being factual. The No campaign keeps repeating massive untruths in an attempt to mislead the Davis voter.  We don’t mind having a debate, but when it comes to building needed housing for low income seniors, the lies harm those seniors most in need in our community. With the waiting lists for four affordable senior housing communities being now at 441 and a wait of over three years a number of Davis seniors will be forced to leave town.

The donation of land to be set aside for affordable housing is the most valuable mechanism used by the city. The value of the land contributed to a non profit allows that land to be leveraged through state and federal programs to provide the highest subsidies and the lowest apartment rents. This category has provided more affordable housing apartments than any other during this past nearly 30 years.

The accusations that the No on Measure L makes are vastly incorrect. The developments in the same category as the Davis Senior Housing Communities (DSHC) at West Davis Active Adult Community (WDAAC) are the following;

Windmere 1, 48 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Windmere II, 58 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Fox Creek, 36 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Heather Glen, 62 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Homestead, 16 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Tuscany Villas, 30 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Walnut Terrace, 31 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Twin Pines, 36 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Owendale, 45 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Tremont Green, 36 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Moore Village, 59 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Cesar Chavez Plaza, 53 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Eleanor Roosevelt, 60 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

DSHC at WDAAC, 150 apartments built by a separate local nonprofit on donated land

Those thirteen prior developments donated acres of valuable land, infrastructure and improvements for local non profits to provide 570 affordable apartments available to Davis residents.

Please vote yes on Measure L to add another much needed 150 affordable senior apartments to meet the needs of the 441 low-income Davis seniors today on local waiting lists.

This is our joint effort to provide reliable factual information to the Davis resident and voter so you can make an informed decision. We will try to write a rebuttal each time a false claim is made about affordable senior housing in Davis. Please vote Yes on Measure L. http://westdavisactive.com/affordable-senior-housing/

William Powell, President Delta Davis Senior Communities (DSHC) and David J Thompson of Neighborhood Partners LLC (NP). Between us we have been Davis residents for over 80 years. Powell has been President of DSHC since 2000 and also serves on the Davis Senior Commission. Thompson financed his first affordable senior housing community in California in 1981. See more information at http://westdavisactive.com/affordable-senior-housing/


By Bill Powell and David Thompson Special to The Enterprise April 15, 2018

The DSHC campus at Dixon proved that building 150 affordable senior apartments in one senior campus created savings in construction, management and operation. Philip Clayton Thompson/photo

Seniors looking for room in Davis

By Bill Powell and David Thompson Special to The Enterprise April 15, 2018

“Each day I get five calls from low income seniors looking to find housing in Davis” says Susan at Shasta Point Retirement Community. “And each day at least one senior arrives at Shasta Point anxious to get housing and hoping by turning up they may have a better chance than just calling.” They don’t.

Every day there are five to 10 emails or phone calls from low-income seniors to the two staff members at Eleanor Roosevelt Circle. At ERC about three seniors per day walk through the door hoping to get a place. They can’t.

In 2018, there is a waiting list of 441 seniors for the four largest Davis senior communities; Davisville (70), Shasta Point (67), Eleanor Roosevelt Circle (59) and Walnut Terrace (30). In 2017 there were a total of 14 turnovers. Only 14 of the 441 waiting in line got in. At that rate it would be 31 years before the last of those seniors get housed. The actual wait for an extremely low-income senior can be from three to five years.

It is 16 years since the last affordable senior-housing development was given the go-ahead in Davis. Without citizen approval of the West Davis Active Adult Community, there is no other affordable senior housing community planned for Davis.


When it works

ERC was developed by a partnership of Davis Senior Housing Communities and Neighborhood Partners. The city of Dixon saw the ERC model of housing and social services and asked us to replicate it in Dixon. In a short time, a developer donated 5 acres of land for Heritage Commons to meet their inclusionary requirement.

A first phase of 60 apartments was built. Three years later a second phase of 54 were built and next year another 44 will be built creating a total of 158 apartments. Earlier this year, the city of Woodland approved a 4-plus-acre site for DSHC/NP to build a similar affordable senior campus of about 120 apartments. The senior affordable campus with social services is a very effective way to serve many seniors with a range of needs.

After 33 Community Meetings and 18 Commission Meetings and since July of 2016, Neighborhood Partners in partnership with Davis (Delta) Senior Housing Communities are proposing a state-of-the-art, 150-apartment, senior affordable housing campus at the West Davis Active Adult Community. The location is great, being adjacent to Sutter Hospital, Communicare, medical offices and not far from the Marketplace.

However, at the last minute, some are calling for the affordable land to be divided into two different uses, and that might mean losing up to 75 senior apartments out of the 150. After two years of planning and community review that would scuttle all the work done by Davis Senior Housing Communities to build a 150-apartment senior campus for Davis seniors most in need.

NP and Delta are most grateful to David Taormino and his family for their generous gift of land for affordable senior housing. It all began when David and his wife saw an anguished senior downtown that had missed the last bus to Eleanor Roosevelt Circle and did not know how she would get home. David and his wife gave her a lift and in doing so he learned about the value of ERC for low-income seniors in our community.

When he began thinking of WDAAC, David realized that finally he could do something about that problem. Donating triple the land required land to create an affordable community of 150 apartments with services for seniors is a godsend.

We are facing a tsunami of seniors. And without the WDAAC proposal passing there will be no affordable homes for tomorrow. Sheila Allen, Executive Director of Yolo County Healthy Aging, has shared with us the statistics about the future for Davis seniors. In five years time, when the first phase of DSHC’s senior housing opens its doors at WDAAC there will be over 16,000 seniors in Davis over 55.

Using Eleanor Roosevelt Circle as a laboratory we have learned a great deal. ERC was the first in the region to have a social services coordinator on site to help seniors who benefitted from services and programs. Of the ERC population 25 percent of the seniors are 80 years or older, and 60 percent of our residents have an average income less than $12,100 and are regretfully far below the extremely low-income number. Seniors of that income get immense health benefits from having access to social services.


Cost savings

The DSHC campus at Dixon proved to us that building 150 affordable senior apartments in one senior campus created savings in the construction stage and additional savings later, in the management-and-operation stage. For example, needing to build just one community building creates a savings of about $1 million dollars. With one architect, one set of plans, shared infrastructure and the same builder we gain savings for the second phase.

But, in particular, the critical human value is in having a large enough senior campus to increase the type of services we can provide on site such as social service coordinators and working links to the programs of the county agencies and nonprofits. By having a campus community we can use the very limited resources to serve one of the most at risk populations in Davis. Lonely seniors scattered around Davis are the least likely to be helped and most likely to be neglected.

Robin Affrime of Communicare told us, “that in the last five years the low income senior population using the Davis Clinic has doubled from 3 percent to 6 percent.” More importantly, she recounted, “there is a wave of senior poverty just around the corner, ages 45-64 has risen to being 19 percent of their 26,500 Davis patient visits.”

The Davis City Council will make the final decision next month. If you would like to help us get our 150-affordable senior campus approved, contact Bill Powell at willpowell123@yahoo.com or David Thompson at dthompcoop@aol.com.

 Bill Powell is president of Delta Davis Senior Housing Communities and David Thompson is with Neighborhood Partners. The two groups have already developed three local senior communities with a fourth starting construction next year. See our plans for DSHC at WDAAC at http://westdavisactive.com.


Senior Apartments

The West Davis Active Adult Community has an affordable housing plan that exceeds city requirements by twice the amount.

The proposed 150 unit affordable senior rental housing complex has an anticipated housing mix includes:

  • Approx. 35% of the apartments will be affordable to households whose incomes do not exceed $13,475
  • Approx. 35% of the apartments will be affordable to households whose incomes do not exceed $26,950
  • Approx. 30% of the apartments will be affordable to households whose incomes do not exceed $32,000
Waiting list for Affordable Rental Units at Eleanor Roosevelt Circle as of September 2017
Average Time on the waiting list for Davis Affordable Units to Seniors at 25% median income.

Delta Senior Housing Communities Background Information

We proudly present our affordable senior housing community  as part of the proposed West Davis Active Adult Community

Delta Senior Housing Communities (DSHC) and Neighborhood Partners, LLC (NP) have been provided with a commitment for five acres of land by the West Davis Active Adult Community (WDAAC) to fulfill the affordable housing requirements of the proposed WDAAC development. See information at http://npllc.org/projects/west-davis-active-adult-community/

DSHC and NP are proud to be asked to participate in the outstanding proposal for a feature rich West Davis Active Adult Community.

By providing the land for 150 affordable apartments, the developer (WDAAC) is providing almost double the number of affordable units required by the City of Davis affordable housing requirements.  No other developer has ever come close to this amount.

On that five acre parcel, DSHC/NP will develop an affordable senior campus of about 150 apartments composed of probably two phases of about 75 apartments each.

The DSHC senior campus will contain a number of amenities such as; a community building with a meeting hall, library, community store, and offices for management and social services personnel.

The DSHC senior campus will also provide areas for a community garden, raised beds, recreation, walking paths, orchards, barbeque pits and places for outdoor gatherings and events.

DSHC will use the extensive senior living experience it has gained since 2007 from operating Eleanor Roosevelt Circle (ERC) in Davis (60 apartments) and Heritage Commons (HC) in Dixon (two phases of 60 and 54 apartments and a planned third phase of 44 apartments) = 158 senior apartments total.  DSHC will provide an appropriate level of social service support staff.

The DSHC senior campus will employ the highest environmental standards that are feasible and use the best energy savings methods possible. We will add as much solar as is economically feasible and bring the highest energy savings to our resident seniors as we can. Five years from now who knows what progress will have been made.

As we do with Eleanor Roosevelt Circle DSHC we will look forward to partnering with a host of local organizations to bring programs, events, benefits and services to enrich and enhance the lives of our resident seniors. Below is a list of some of the partners at ERC that we would invite to work at the WDAAC community. (See Appendix A)

It should be understood that the opportunity to develop another 150 affordable apartments for seniors in Davis is critically important to serving the growing need of local seniors for affordable housing and services.

The permanent waiting list for Eleanor Roosevelt Circle alone is now over 200 seniors and the wait for the apartments set aside for seniors at 25% of median income is usually about three years. Many Davis seniors don’t even add their name to the list when they hear how long the wait might be. Waiting lists for the other affordable senior apartments in Davis are also large and long.

With no other affordable senior housing in the pipeline, the WDAAC becomes the only opportunity in Davis to add additional affordable senior apartments in the next ten years.

The range of affordability we will achieve at the West Davis location will be determined by the availability of specific financing. However, the apartments likely available will be affordable to households from 25% – 60% of median income. To give an example, a single senior would be eligible for housing (using 2016 HUD limits) from below $13,475 (25% of median income) up to $32,300 (60% of median income). A married senior couple would be eligible with income of up to $36,900 (60% median income). So affordable housing in our DSHC Davis communities is available to many seniors.

This specific West Davis location has many unique qualities that might not be available at other sites. Being right next door to Sutter Hospital and to the CommuniCare Davis Clinic means that our resident seniors have a range of health care and dental options right on their doorstep. The site is only a half mile away from the Marketplace Shopping Center where there is a supermarket, financial institution, drugstore, and many restaurants and services. The site is also directly on city wide bus routes going either east or west on Covell.  As it already does, Davis Community Transit also would provide a transportation link for our resident seniors in the WDAAC.

Some of the Nonprofit and Community Groups that use the ERC Community Building and offer their events to our resident seniors:

  • Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (lectures, talks, films, etc)
  • Intergenerational Jammers (Music Group)
  • Senior Link (Informational Presentations)
  • Veteran’s Administration (Informational Presentations)
  • Legal Services of Northern California (Informational Presentations)
  • Woodland Hearing Aid Services (Informational Presentations)
  • Yolo Hospice (Informational Presentations)
  • Chicken and Dumplin (Music Group)
  • Berryessa Gold Chorus (Music Group)
  • Woodland Healthcare (Presentations)
  • University Farm Circle Book Club
  • University Farm Circle Bridge Club
  • Acme Theatre Company
  • American Association of University Women, Davis Branch
  • Compassionate Friends
  • The Food Bank of Yolo County
  • The Davis Food Coop (Cooking Demonstrations)
  • Yolo County District Attorney’s Office (Informational Presentations)
  • The Red Hat Ladies “Sugar Time Follies” (Music Group)
  • Right and Relevant Thrift Store
  • Moonlite Transitions (Informational Presentation)
  • In Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Advisory Committee Meeting
  • Project Impact, Society for the Blind (Informational Presentations)
  • Yolo Housing Authority
  • Paratransit Inc. (Informational Presentation)
  • California Telephone Access Service (Informational Presentations)
  • American Red Cross (Informational Presentations)


  1. Thompson, 2017

Within WDAAC along West Covell Blvd in West Davis there is a proposed 150 apartment affordable senior housing campus community. The senior campus will be a Davis based partnership of Delta Senior Housing Communities, Neighborhood Partners and The John Stewart Company.  We will endeavor to achieve wherever possible the following sustainability features taking into account both funding opportunities and cost limitations;

Green and Environmental Features

  • “Build it Green” certified & incorporating passive solar
  • Will incorporate as many solar panels as possible as tax law allows
  • Exceed State Energy Standards by more than 25%
  • Use “Cool” roofing materials and radiant barriers
  • Use recycled materials as much as possible
  • All apartments are south facing for highest capture of solar values
  • All apartments receive sun during winter/cooler seasons
  • Central landscaped courtyards highlight green features
  • Landscaped bio-swale where possible to cleanse storm water runoff
  • Robust landscaping designed for water efficiency
  • All apartments have natural cross ventilation
  • All apartments have Energy Star appliances
  • All windows and frames have high energy efficiency
  • We will link all residents to low income utility programs
  • Trex recyclable materials used wherever possible in decking, railings, etc.
  • Paths built to encourage walking and outdoor activities
  • Benches built to encourage sitting and gathering outside
  • Picnic and barbeque areas to encourage outside activities
  • Raised garden beds and land set aside for resident gardens
  • Garden Sheds set aside for tool storage
  • Community orchards and land set aside to grow fruits and vegetables
  • Distribute on site grown fruit and vegetables to residents
  • Create as much reserved parking as possible for green re-use

Living Features

  • All apartments designed for full adaptability – accessibility
  • All apartments include fire sprinklers for safety
  • All apartments have environmentally responsive flooring
  • All apartments overlook landscaped areas or central courtyard
  • All ground floor units have outdoor patios
  • All apartments designed for flow through fresh air to reduce HVAC use
  • All windows open to the fresh air yet covered for inclement weather
  • Our design eliminates all institutional indoor corridors
  • Every apartment has a spacious roll in shower
  • Water saving uses incorporated into apartment and building design
  • Interior finishes selected for optimum indoor air quality
  • Siding chosen to vary between different looking materials
  • Elevators in all buildings for universal access
  • Stairs in numerous locations for each building to encourage exercise

Community Features

  • On site solar panels to operate electricity for community power uses
  • Community Room to accommodate meetings, classes, activities, etc.
  • Communal Laundry facilities to encourage social interaction
  • Communal Laundry reduces use of 150 washers and dryers
  • Community kitchen space to accommodate resident potlucks and group meals
  • Community Room opens out onto Patio and Courtyard
  • Offices for Site Manager, Social Services Coordinator and others
  • Community Library
  • On Line Computer Kiosk for use by residents
  • Community Shop (resident run services)
  • Links to Village Harvest, Farm Davis for distribution of surplus crops
  • Links to Nugget, Food Co-op, Panera Bread and others for surplus food distribution
  • Space set aside for Food Bank and other food distribution networks
  • Indoor seating area for residents awaiting transportation pick-up
  • Drop Off area for Davis Community Transit, and other transportation services
  • Nearby spaces set side for Zip Car and other shared vehicle programs
  • Incorporate Electric Vehicle Charging Stations where possible
  • Focus on reducing vehicular trips
  • Encourage use of Unitrans, Yolobus and other public transportation
  • Pursue additional sustainability facilities on the 5 acre Senior Campus

Davis Senior Campus Commons at West Covell Blvd, Davis, CA.

See website for project details www.npllc.org/projects/WDAAC

Delta Senior Housing Communities (DSHC) serving the Seniors of Davis

Eleanor Roosevelt Circle, 675 Cantrill Dr. Davis, CA 95616


September, 2017. Contact David J. Thompson: 530-757-2233 dthompcoop@aol.com