The CHA Story

Founded in 1997 as an alternative approach to traditional real estate development, Creative Housing Associates, LLC (CHA) is a neighborhood and transit-oriented builder. We model ourself after the historic concept of the town builder - a partner to the community and facilitator for growth and maturity in alignment with local values. Since our inception, we have focused on building small-town downtowns near transit stations, to encourage accessibility to diverse, vibrant neighborhoods, while de-emphasizing automobile use. 

In numerous of public/private partnerships, CHA has teamed up with municipalities and transportation agencies, in order to bring forth some of California's most respected and tasteful civic revitalizations. In 2006, CHA's Mission Meridian Village in South Pasadena won several coveted awards including the Congress for New Urbanism's "Charter Award" and "Best Transit-Oriented Project" by the Urban Land Institute. 

CHA prides itself in the ethos of not building units, but homes and spaces for people to live, create and commune. It engages renowned architects to thoughtfully design every project, delicately integrating new development with existing structures. Great value is placed in renovating historic districts, with extensive experience in applying sensitivity to historic buildings through adaptive reuse and even site transfers. 

In every endeavor, CHA is unwavering in its commitment to listen to communities, respect traditions and build consensus. We often commit to local hiring provisions to offer professional opportunities and training to at-risk populations and to ensure direct investments to the community. To this end, Michael Dieden, CHA's President, founded the non-governmental organization PVJOBS in 1998 and served as the first President in what has now become a national leader among exemplary hiring halls that offer technical training and living wages to at-risk populations. 


We believe that developments should celebrate and promote the humanity of a local community. That is why we partner with individuals in the local community. A few of our local partnerships are outlined below.  

"Stuff I Eat" Restaurant

Chef Babette is a celebrated chef and co-owner of the restaurant "Stuff I Eat", which offers vegan soul food to the Ingelwood community in Los Angeles. Chef Babette's food is celebrated by media outlets across the U.S., including BuzzFeed Video. 

Creative Housing Associates is working with Chef Babette to create the first sit-down restaurant in Watts since the 1965 Watts Riots. Born in Watts, Chef Babette will create a health-conscious menu that caters to local tastes. Moreover, she plans to promote healthy eating and exercise habits for individuals in the Watts community. 

Ron Finley the "Gangsta Gardener"

Ron Finley will have a garden in the Watts Gateway project. His goal—and our goal—is to increase the amount of healthy vegetables and fruits in Watts, California. Ron is globally renowned for his efforts in healthy eating and preparation. Click here to learn more about Ron.

The Teen Project

CHA has partnered with "The Teen Project," which provides resources to teens aging out of the foster system. Lauri Burns, the founder of the "The Teen Project," was once a foster child that experienced prostitution, homelessness, and drug addiction after leaving the foster system. Rescued at age 23, she eventually created "The Teen Project" so other foster children would not face the challenges that she faced. Her efforts have received praise from numerous luminaries and organizations across the U.S.

Specifically, CHA will assist "The Teen Project" by developing housing to accommodate more foster children from the L.A. area. 

PV Jobs

PVJOBS and Creative Housing Associates interviewed youths of Inglewood, CA regarding the redevelopment of Market Street. The video shows how redevelopment can not only impact a neighborhood's atmosphere, but its economic vitality.