DOWNEY - The city is counting on a $3.8 million federal loan to complete a trio of community projects, including redevelopment of vacant new car dealerships.Downey will apply for a loan from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. If approved, the loan would be repaid over 20 years at an annual interest rate of 4.37%. City officials said they would use $1.8 million to create a "financial fund" to help redevelop the former Downey Ford dealership at 9500 Lakewood Blvd., the former Cadillac dealership at 10700 Studebaker Rd. and the Dodge dealership at 9715 Firestone Blvd. Another $1.5 million would be used to construct an 18,000 square foot multi-purpose community building at Discovery Sports Complex to house the city's full-scale replica of a NASA space shuttle. The mock-up, currently in storage at Downey Studios, was donated to the city by NASA. The final $500,000 would be used to expand Apollo Park by clearing an adjacent public works yard. Ed Velasco, a housing manager for Downey, said the city has used HUD loans three times in the past, most recently to help build Discovery Sports Complex. It will take HUD about three to four months to consider the latest application, Velasco said.
********** Published: June 24, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 10