SAN DIEGO —

Microapartments just debuted in Little Italy. The smallest units at The Continential are 380 square feet. The largest is 550 square feet.

The cheapest unit is about $1,600 dollars a month, which on average is about 30% less than the median price in Little Italy. 

“We felt the market was becoming saturated with high end-high priced units and we could fill a void that was untouched,” said Matthew Segal, the architect.

Not everyone embraced the more budget-friendly concept.

“Initially, the neighborhood was not excited to say the least,” said Segal. “They were adamant no one could live in a micro unit, [and] we would never rent them.”

The complex just opened weeks ago and 80% of the apartments have already been leased.

“I would say predominantly, it’s single people from early 20s all the way to mid- to late-50s, 60s,” said Segal. “It’s a full gamut of people.”

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The laundry room is on the rooftop deck where residents can wash their clothes and watch the sunset. All of the units have a patio.

“I think it’s part of the way we need to go to solve the housing crisis,” said Segal. “Not everyone can afford $5,000 a month to live downtown. This offers the opportunity to diversify the neighborhood.”

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There are 11 parking spots in the building and less than half have been spoken for.