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Google Invests in Affordable Housing Near Calif. Googleplex

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.) -- Google has already invested millions in windmills and fiber-optic communication in Kansas City, Kan.  Now, the online search giant has expanded its real estate portfolio with $6 million in a housing development near its headquarters, saying it hopes to support affordable housing and alternative transportation.

The newly constructed Franklin Street Family Apartments is 2.5 miles south of the Googleplex in Mountain View, Calif.  The property developer describes the project as an "environmentally friendly development, constructed using sustainable building methods."  It includes conservation features such as solar photovoltaic panels, energy efficient appliances, low-flow plumbing fixtures and a naturally filtrating storm water runoff system.

But perhaps the best part of the $23 million housing development for the new residents is the rent -- as low as $837 for a one-bedroom unit and $1,122 for two bedrooms.  The city's average rental price is around $3,063 a month, according to the Zillow rent index, while two-bedroom homes can be rented for as much as $5,500 a month.  The median home value in Mountain View is $1,033,000, according to Zillow.

"Mountain View has been a wonderful home to Google, so we couldn't be more thrilled to help others make this community their home as well," said Kojo Ako-Asare, head of Google's corporate finance team.  "Google remains committed to supporting affordable housing options in areas that allow for use of alternative transportation."

The affordable housing development was designed for people making about $44,000 a year on average. The 51 units each have one to three bedrooms and up to two bathrooms.

While the benefits to the community are evident, Google will also gain from more than just goodwill. Christopher Long at Aegon Realty Advisors tells ABC News affiliate KGO-TV that the company may receive millions in tax credits over time.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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