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Updated Dec 5, 2012 - 3:03 pm

Mesa breaks ground on new homeless housing unit

A new affordable housing project is going up in Mesa.

Michael Trailor with the Arizona Department of Housing said the transformation from an old motel to the La Mesita Apartments is a partnership between a few public and private agencies that are hoping to tackle the problem of homelessness.

"The government just can't afford to provide all of the funding for the answers in our communities," he said. "We have to do a much better job of developing private resources and not depending so much on the government."

Mesa City Manager Chris Brady said the complex's location near Broadway and Stapley will help encourage future tenants, especially those without a car.

"I think it's significant that we found an opportunity to invest and leverage the significant investment of light rail in creating that transportation opportunity for those who may not have access to a personal vehicle," he said.

The building will have 80 apartments, 30 of which will be permanent units for the chronically homeless. On-site health and child care, education and financial help will be made available.

About the Author

Martha is the traffic controller in the KTAR newsroom. Her full time role is that of Assignment and Breaking News Editor of KTAR News. She oversees daily Breaking News planning and over-the air execution, and puts together the elements that make it happen. She gathers and distributes daily news assignments to reporters and editors. She also reports on a daily basis, anchors news afternoons 1-2p and fills in as anchor occasionally during other time slots. She began working at KTAR in the winter of 2012 as Desk Editor and was promoted to oversee Assignments and Breaking News in 2014. During that time, she received two awards as a journalist. The first was the 2013 APTRA Awards, where she took home 2nd place for Best Serious Future in the "Recycled Orchestra." The second was a 2014 Edward R. Murrow Award for her collaboration in KTAR's Voice for a Better Arizona Series: Immigration - seeking solutions. In her piece, Martha profiled two Arizona sisters looking for the DREAM. Martha was born in Mazatlan, Mexico. She moved to Arizona in 1996 with her parents and younger sister and has lived here since. She attended Barry Goldwater High School in Phoenix and graduated from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications at Arizona State University in Tempe. Prior to working at KTAR news she worked in news and production at Univision Arizona in Phoenix. She also supervised the marketing, catering and public relations department at Hotel Araiza, 5-star hotel in Mexicali, Mexico. She has also been a personal trainer and aerobics instructor. When she isn't in the newsroom or behind the microphone Martha is an avid gym-goer and marathoner. She trains for two races a year and enjoys taking group exercise classes, such as kickboxing, indoor cycling and weight lifting. Martha is married and lives in Surprise, AZ with 2 dogs, Tasha and Elsa, and a cat, Sammy.


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