41 Mobile Home Parks in California Have Closed for Redevelopment Since 2015 with More On the Way

According to an online report by Spectrum NEWS 1, the Imperial Avalon Mobile Estates in Carson, California (Los Angeles County) is set to close for redevelopment in as soon as six months. There are three more mobile home parks to eventually close in the city of Carson, with more possibly on the way.

According to the California Department of Housing and Community Development, six mobile home parks in the state have opened while 41 have closed for redevelopment since 2015.

Imperial Avalon Mobile Estates is a senior (55+) community located in a heavily populated lower-income area not far from the City of Los Angeles, where the land is valuable for developers of density housing in search of building up, according to USC Professor Gary Painter, who has a background in housing and urban economics, believes mobile homeland is an attractive buy for developers, especially in the California housing market.

Most of the park closures are populated by seniors with few affordable options and face a future of uncertainty due to the proposed development. 

“I have to accept it. This is not our land. We have to go. Then we have to go,” said Imperial Avalon Mobile Estates park resident Adelina Willis. For the last year, she’s been contemplating what her next move will be. The payout she’s being offered, she said, won’t be enough for her to put a downpayment on another mobile home. In the meantime, she’s slowly putting her memories and belongings in boxes.

The looming transition has left her emotional. Willis is one of the hundreds of mobile home park residents who will soon have to make a decision to either take an offer to relocate their mobile home, take the appraised value or originally paid, or an option to get about 45% of the appraised value with the promise of subsidized housing once the new development is complete.

“In many ways, what was a form of affordable housing is now at-risk in many communities because the land is so valuable,” Painter said.

Painter shared that high-rise housing developments allow developers to build up and create more units on a single plot of land than single-story mobile homes are on. But it comes at a cost to those in need of affordable spaces.

“If we end up in a world where people who only have moderate or low income keep getting pushed further and further away from where the job opportunities are, then we are going to have a situation where we all face a burden because congestion increases,”  Painter said. “For people who are low-income, they may actually hit the breaking point.”

The fear for Willis still lingers as she prepares for the inevitable move. Adelina Willis and other residents have about 6 months before their location closes.

“They know we have to move. But the time is when? Because we cannot just move, you know, because the money they are giving us is not enough,” Willis said.

She’s not sure what her best option will be. But she’s hoping her best path forward will lead her to a place she can afford to call home.

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