Pipeline grows, but demand for affordable housing continues to surge

“It’s clean, it’s good, it’s safe,” Christine Jimenez says of the two-bedroom apartment she shares with her 14-year old daughter in Portland’s Bayside neighborhood. “I feel good here.”

Being on the first floor and close to public transportation are big pluses, as is the garden plot where the two have grown lettuce, tomatoes, spinach, green peppers, radishes and cilantro. “My daughter loves the garden.”

Jimenez, 51, is originally from New York and has been in Portland for 21 years. Unable to work right now because of knee and hip problems, she lives on Social Security. She moved into the apartment three years ago after a few months on a waiting list at Avesta Housing, a nonprofit provider of affordable housing in southern Maine and New Hampshire.