SALINAS, Calif. - UPDATE 12/9/2016 6:15 PM:
A new affordable housing development is coming to Salinas. But before the old buildings are demolished, several of them are providing a training opportunity for local law enforcement.
The Monterey County Sheriff’s Office SWAT Team trains every month but on Friday, they were allowed to have full reign over a vacant building slated for demolition.
"Using this opportunity to get floor plans we don't see all the time and we go through our entry techniques and we make entries as we would if we're out in the county somewhere," said Sgt. Mark Sievers.
At another building on the property, firefighters were practicing was called V.E.S. – vent, enter, search.
While crews battled the fire from the first floor and the roof, another crew rescued a victim, in this case, a baby doll.
Six of these buildings on East Rossi will be razed next week to make room for Haciendas 3, a 50-unit affordable multi-family housing development.
It’s the fourth and final phase of the Haciendas project that revitalizes older buildings. It’s next to the recently opened Dai-Ichi Village, a 41-unit affordable housing development for seniors.
"We just recently, within a week or two, finished construction on the development,” said Starla Warren, president and CEO of Housing Development Corporation. “It will be fully leased up within two weeks, is pretty impressive. It does speak to the demand that senior development but the demand is even stronger for multi-family housing development."
When completed, the new housing development will have community amenities like a playground, community room and laundry area. It will also include sustainable and green building elements like onsite renewable energy.
Demolition will begin next week, the project should be completed and ready for tenants by the end of 2017.
Fire crews and SWAT teams took advantage of a scheduled demolition project to train in a vacant set of buildings in the Japantown neighborhood of Salinas Friday. The six buildings are scheduled for demolition to make way for a new affordable 50-unit housing project.
SWAT teams detonated pyrotechnic devices and stormed through doors. Firefighters brought out hoses and ladders to fight a simulated blaze.
Monterey County SWAT leaders say it is rare that teams get such unlimited access to existing buildings for training exercises.
Tonight, KION's Mariana Hicks takes us inside the training and shows us plans for the new housing project.