Measure U funding bolsters youth activities at Marina Vista and Alder Grove

The Sacramento City Council last week approved $2.5 million in funding for activities, enrichment, and educational programming for young people living in the Marina Vista and Alder Grove public housing communities on Broadway.

The list of investments includes improved broadband access, park improvements, soccer and basketball programs run by Street Soccer and Ball Out Academy, after-school programming, and parent support. The funding plan was crafted with the community by Councilmember Katie Valenzuela in response to the November 2021 shooting at the complex that claimed the life of two people, including a child. Valenzuela developed the plan in partnership with resident leaders and the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency (SHRA), which manages the housing development.

The YMCA will be contracted to provide programming during winter, spring, and summer breaks for the students at Leataata Floyd Elementary. Valenzuela’s office will also be hosting regular youth-focused community events throughout the year.

“I want to commend Councilmember Valenzuela on taking the initiative on helping out an important part of the city that needs and deserves more,” said Mayor Darrell Steinberg

This budget allocation will come from Measure U, the sales tax that was approved by the voters in 2018 and provides an additional $60 million a year for the City of Sacramento.

“This neighborhood has historically lacked access to opportunities, and Isabel’s death was a stark reminder that it was past time for us to change that. I’m very proud of the work my office has done to work with community leaders to find tangible steps we can take to provide new opportunities and support to these residents,” Valenzuela said.

A $1.4 million broadband infrastructure allocation to SHRA is the largest item in the package and builds off the success of a pilot that offered free high-speed Wi-Fi to a small group of residents in the Marina Vista community. Once completed, 751 households will have free broadband access for at least five years. The funding will also provide computer hardware and digital literacy classes. This will provide internet access to users for education/remote learning, telehealth, telework, and much more. The service will also increase security/safety, and provide access to SHRA online services.

In the feedback gathered, the desire for a park in the community rose to the top. The Youth, Parks and Community Enrichment Department will conduct a community planning process for a proposed park on a parcel of land immediately adjacent to the housing project on Muir Way. The proposed parcel is controlled by SHRA, and the City of Sacramento would need to obtain an easement from the agency to move forward. The planning process will also include identifying park improvements and partnerships to fill in funding gaps.

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