Council May Buy Lot for Low-Cost Housing

City leaders may purchase a vacant lot on Fulton Street to build more affordable housing in what is known as the Barry Street neighborhood.

"We've had the appraisal done and have discussed it with the property owner, who is willing to sell the property for the appraised value," said Tony Boden, the city's planning director.

The City Council will decide at Wednesday's meeting whether to purchase the property for $45,000 and move forward with necessary environmental studies.

The lot is adjacent to the Casa Velasquez, a 13-unit apartment complex that was carved out of one of Camarillo's poorest working-class neighborhoods in December 1995.

Boden said the city hopes to build two units on the lot within the next year.

"We'd like them to be just like the ones at Casa Velasquez," Boden said. "Our intent is for it to be run by Cabrillo and to have the same design."

Before moving to Casa Velasquez, many of the families lived in substandard conditions and paid high rent. Now they have large clean apartments that range from $584 to $737 per month, depending on the size of the unit.

With the help of representatives from Cabrillo Economic Corp., who manage the apartments, families have established a successful resident council.

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