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Prefab Modular Building In Skid Row To Provide Homeless Housing

LOS ANGELES ( — The more than 100 prefabricated modular units being stacked on top of an abandoned parking lot in the middle of Skid Row is touted as a cost-effective way to get homeless people off the streets of Los Angeles.

The Skid Row Housing Trust unveiled the partially completed Star Apartments on Tuesday.

"I don't know if there is any other building like this in the country," said Housing Trust Executive Director, Michael Alvidrez.

When the residential complex is complete, it will include on-site services like medical care, psychiatric services and even money management counseling.

"We'll have an exercise room, a basketball court, an art room, a library with internet access," said Alvidrez.

In addition, the bill for the community space will be a fraction of what new construction would cost.

"This is just less money. We thought about this sometime ago and the prefab gives us an opportunity to continue to build, to continue to get homeless folks off the streets, for far less costs and much faster," said Alvidrez.

Award-winning architect Michael Maltzan said prefab modular building may be a model for the future.

"It's a model, or a demonstration, for the way to build residential units in the city, especially as the city gets denser and denser," he said.

Star Apartments should be open and ready for occupancy in Spring 2013.

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