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Phoenix nonprofit UMOM opens new affordable housing complex

(UMOM Photo)

PHOENIX — Phoenix-based nonprofit UMOM New Day Centers opened an affordable housing complex near 19th and Glendale avenues Wednesday.

The 19West complex was built on a formerly vacant lot used by homeless people for camping, according to a press release.

Darlene Newsom, CEO of UMOM, told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Wednesday that there are 54 two- and three-bedroom apartments available at reduced rent to people in need.

“We’ve been leasing out for about for three weeks now,” Newsom said.

“We have 35 residents that have already moved in, and we have applications for the rest of the units — in fact, we have a waiting list of 25.”

The group, along with newly inaugurated Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego, hopes that 19West can help alleviate the Valley’s shortage of affordable housing.

“We value every resident. Everyone deserves a safe place to call home, with amenities,” Gallego said at the center’s ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“I think this is a project where any one of us would be happy to live, and that’s a great standard for the city of Phoenix.”

Gallego called the center a “model project” that she hopes to help reproduce during her time as mayor.

Newsom said besides the living units, the center also offers tenant support services including after-school programs, financial literacy classes, a computer lab and a food pantry.

“It was real important for us to fit into the community with a ranch-style complex, and we have a lots of community space for the families,” Newsom said.

“And we’re just hoping to become a real part of this community.”

KTAR News 92.3 Fm’s Ali Vetnar contributed to this report.

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