LEED gold LGBT senior complex provides homes to the homeless

Although homelessness is a difficult problem to completely eliminate, one way to combat it is to provide more housing options. KFA recently completed a huge housing complex in Los Angeles, California designed to provide for those experiencing chronic homelessness and rent will be paid through various grants.

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An overview look over a railing of a building with lots of windows

“In response, the Ariadne Getty Foundation (AGF) has recognized these challenges and, in an effort to also help LGBTQ elders facing social isolation, family rejection or discrimination in traditional senior housing, the AGF has donated $2.5 million to the Los Angeles LGBT Center to build the Ariadne Getty Foundation Senior Housing,” said Adriadne Getty, president and executive director of the project. “The goal of the gift has a twofold purpose. The first, and most important, is that we provide housing for LGBTQ seniors. And, the second, is the AGF inspires others to donate to care for the elderly LGBTQ community who have faced so many obstacles and discriminations yet have gotten us to where we are today.”

Related: Affordable senior housing gets a climate-responsive upgrade in California

Outside resting area where a man is sitting at a table during what looks like the night time

The Ariadne Getty Foundation Senior Housing Complex is designed for seniors aged 65 and older. It took six years to complete the large complex, but now it’s ready with 70,300 square feet of space over five stories. The housing is certified LEED gold. It’s also right next door to the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Anita May Rosenstein Campus, also certified LEED gold.

Living room area with sofas, tables, a piano and TV

The building has 98 units total, including studio apartments and one to two bedroom apartments. Of these, 72 will be awarded through a lottery system. The rest will be used for those who have faced chronic homelessness.

Inside living room with four grey sofas surrounding a glass table

Designed to complement the campus next door, the building has a simple, curving design that’s covered with smooth white stucco. A lobby greets you on the first floor and includes a mailroom, TV area, community area, kitchen, fitness room and laundry room that opens into the courtyard. In the courtyard, there’s a barbeque area with seating.

A dining room with four chairs around a square table and a white-walled apartment

All the units have balconies and big windows in the living room. All the apartment bathrooms are fully wheelchair accessible with helpful grab bars for seniors.

A room with chairs and tables opening up to the outside dining area

The center next door offers services for LGBTQ+ social and cultural support, HIV treatment, wellness and gender identity. They also provide meal services, employment training, case management and other activities.

A white building on the left side with trees on the right side

“The lack of affordable housing in this country is at an all-time high and presents even greater hardships for the LGBTQ community given the many biases which continue to exist. It’s an even greater problem amongst LGBTQ seniors,” said Getty.