Housing

Elliot Schrage, Facebook’s VP Corporate Communications & Public Policy, announced today that The San Francisco Foundation is contributing $1 million to the Catalyst Housing Fund.

“Though the [Silicon Valley] region is thriving in many ways, our community clearly needs more affordable places to live,” he said in a press release. “That’s why we’re working alongside our neighbors to increase affordable housing in the Bay Area.”

In 2016, Facebook announced a partnership with Envision Transform Build and the cities of East Palo Alto and Menlo Park to create regional solutions to the affordable housing crisis. A pillar of the partnership was to create the Catalyst Housing Fund with an initial investment of $18.5 million to pursue innovative and scalable ways to increase the construction and protection of affordable housing.

Then, in August 2017, Facebook announced that Local Initiatives Support Corporation and Housing Trust Silicon Valley would manage the fund and leverage the initial investment to as much as $75 million.

The Menlo Park-based social media company plans to deploy funds in the next five to eight years to accelerate the development of affordable housing in the region.

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Spotted: Last part of modular house being put in place

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We’ve watched as a huge whole was dug on Lemon Street near Oak Avenue, and then a wooden framework put in place. Another big basement we figured. And indeed that may be the case. But there’s no waiting for the house to be built. It descended from above today in four pieces. We caught the […]

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Community meeting on MidPen Housing project set for Dec. 6

Mayor Kirsten Keith and MidPen Housing are hosting a community meeting Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017, to solicit community input on MidPen’s 1283 Willow Road and 335 Pierce Street properties. The meeting will be held at the Menlo Park Senior Center located at 110 Terminal Avenue. The City is conducting extensive outreach to ensure that residents […]

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Menlo Park Mayor Kirsten Keith hosts discussion on housing challenges on Nov. 13

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Menlo Park Mayor Kirsten Keith is hosting an “On the Table” conversation about Silicon Valley housing challenges on Monday, November 13, 2017 at the Arrillaga Recreation Center, Oak Room at 6:00 pm. “On the Table” aims to increase civic participation, foster new relationships and inspire action through small group conversations over a meal, coffee or […]

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Facebook announces next step in funding and building affordable housing in neighboring communities

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Building upon a community partnership announced last December called “Envision Transform Build” along with the cities of Menlo Park and East Palo Alto to create regional solutions to the affordable housing crisis, today Facebook announced that the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) will manage the Catalyst Housing fund in collaboration with Housing Trust Silicon Valley and possibly other local […]

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The building of a Menlo Park family’s mini retreat featured on Tiny House Nation

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Fellow Menlo Park residents can spot familiar faces this weekend when CJ and Christina and children JJ and baby Max are featured on Tiny House Nation. The show airs on FYI (772 on Comcast Bay Area) Saturday, June 24 at 6:00 pm PDT. [Note: It is the show’s policy not to use participants’ last names.] CJ is an attorney […]

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Rents in Menlo Park remain in the stratosphere

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Menlo posted an average rent of $3,700 in April, according to the latest research by RENTCafé. “It edges out cities like San Francisco or San Mateo, where rents average $3,355 and $3030, respectively,” emails RENTCafé spokesperson Adrian Rosenberg. “Unfortunately for local renters, the prices in Menlo are on the upswing. Average rents have seen a […]

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Menlo Park tops population growth chart among Bay Area cities

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Menlo Park grew more than any other city in the Bay Area, according to a report issued by the state Department of Finance. Its population went from 33,807 in January 2016 to 35,670 in January 2017. The 5.5% increase resulted from multi-family housing development, the report said. Pictured is a Elan Menlo Park, a 146-unit apartment […]

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Learn about Stanford’s Middle Plaza project at community meeting on March 16

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In a press release issued today, Stanford University said there will be a community meeting tomorrow (Thursday, March 16) to provide local residents with the latest information on the plans to turn an 8.4-acre stretch of vacant car lots along El Camino Real in Menlo Park into a mix of housing, offices and retail. Known as Middle Plaza, the […]

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Betty Hilmer shares memories of her adobe house in Atherton

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An adobe house in Atherton? Don’t think pueblo or cliff dwelling. The house that caught Robert and Betty Hilmer’s eye over 50 years ago is a mid-century modern gem. “We happened on it by chance,” Betty recalled, sitting in the family room of a house that’s largely unchanged since they moved in in 1956. “We were […]

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Menlo Park resident Diane Dittmar tackles homelessness through her work at Abode Services

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Editor’s note: In Silicon Valley, soccer parents hold PhD’s, fresh-faced college kids launch IPO’s, and Teslas are parked outside Trader Joe’s. In this world of affluence and innovation, some find themselves literally on the side of the road, homeless.  Into this often overlooked world of homelessness in San Mateo County steps Menlo Park resident Diane Dittmar […]

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