County Succeeds in Appeal for Millions to Complete Duroville Replacement Housing Project
PALM DESERT – State finance officials have approved Riverside County’s appeal to use $9.9 million in bond proceeds to complete Mountain View Estates, a replacement housing project for the dilapidated “Duroville” mobile home park in Mecca. The project on Avenue 70 and Harrison Street in Oasis would provide 181 modular housing units for Duroville residents.
“It was imperative to protect millions of dollars that were committed and invested in this project since 2007,” said Supervisor John J. Benoit. “We were never going to give up on the hopes and dreams of Duroville residents. The state’s decision should allow the county to finish Mountain View Estates and finally close the chapter on Duroville.”
Authorization to spend the final $9.9 million to purchase and install modular housing units on site had been held up since April, when the state Department of Finance disallowed funding to complete the project as part of the redevelopment wind-down in California. County officials argued that they had met requirements for using the money for the project. On Sunday, the state Department of Finance determined the $9.9 million could be used to purchase and install the project’s remaining 140 units. Previously, about $2.2 million was spent to place 41 units on the site.
Approximately $16.2 million has been invested over four years, including county funds, federal grants and private financing. The money helped develop a sewer line and potable water for Mountain View Estates, as well as roads, community facilities and landscaping.
The sewer line, being constructed by the Coachella Valley Water District, should be finished in a few weeks. The county needs to issue certificates of occupancy before Duroville residents, already prequalified by the county, can move into 41 units already on site. The county is working to expedite that process as soon as possible.
Completion of Mountain View Estates is a crucial component of the federal government’s plan to close Duroville, which sits on tribal land and is home to hundreds of farmworkers.