OTDA Helps Break Ground for Project on Lower East Side
New York, October 4, 2007 – State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) Commissioner David A. Hansell spoke at the September 28 groundbreaking for The Lee, a 263-unit residence being constructed by Common Ground as housing for formerly homeless individuals and others at risk of becoming homeless.
OTDA awarded $6.5 million in Homeless Housing and Assistance Program (HHAP) funds to Common Ground for this project. Over the years, OTDA has awarded nearly $33 million through HHAP for Common Ground projects that will result in the development of 1,150 housing units, once all the funded projects are completed.
“Working with Common Ground is nothing new to OTDA,” Commissioner Hansell said. “We’re pleased to be able to continue this successful collaboration.”
The Lee Residence addresses several special needs populations in which there is a severe dearth of housing, particularly young adults who are homeless, at risk of homelessness and “aging out” of foster care. This project will also house formerly homeless adults living with HIV/AIDS – a population for which we continue to need additional supportive housing. Additional units will be for formerly homeless adults diagnosed with serious and persistent mental illness.
Almost as important as the 263 housing units this project will provide are the array of support services Common Ground will provide at the site.
“This is keeping with Governor Spitzer’s recently detailed economic security agenda which aims to provide working people with the tools they need to achieve and maintain their greatest level of self-sufficiency” Commissioner Hansell said. “This is an ideal that Governor Spitzer and OTDA remain firmly committed to.”