Housing and Revitalization Awards Announced as Part Of Governor Cuomo’s Mohawk Valley Capital for a Day
Albany NY – August 25, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — Members of the Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) senior management team joined Governor Andrew M. Cuomo at his Capital for a Day in the Mohawk Valley recently to demonstrate the agency’s commitment to New Yorkers in the region through its various revitalization programs. The day featured a walking tour of the Cornhill community in Utica, a neighborhood that is undergoing revitalization, and a roundtable discussion in the City of Amsterdam on housing and community revitalization needs and priorities.
Since 2011, HCR has made 163 awards, totaling more than $46.8 million in Office of Community Renewal resources in every county in the region. The funding, proposed to create or retain more than 1,120 jobs, has been for rehabilitation of more than 1,100 units of housing.
“The towns and cities in the Mohawk Valley face many of the same challenges we see elsewhere around the State, but require unique solutions and dedicated resources,” said Executive Deputy Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas. “Our goal today and moving forward is to identify housing and community development challenges that face these communities and their residents and to identify what has worked, and what needs work. The State has made significant investments in vital communities in and around the Valley, including in the Cornhill neighborhood in Utica, and in Amsterdam. We intend to continue these efforts – building on progress we’ve made and creating new opportunities as we go.”
The day began with HCR joining representatives of the Department of State and the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance at a roundtable discussion regarding opportunities and challenges facing small cities and communities in Rural Mohawk Valley. The discussion focused on building and preserving multi-family affordable housing; restoring and improving efficiency in an aging housing stock and fostering commercial and economic development. The event was hosted by Centro Civico of Amsterdam, Inc., whose Executive Director, Ladan Alomar, is a member of the Governor’s Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council.
HCR has made significant investments in Amsterdam. In a collaborative effort with another state agency, HCR has partnered with Empire State Development (ESD) to help retain and expand Amsterdam Printing and save 365 jobs by investing $900,000 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds and $5.6 million in equity. HCR also teamed with ESD to assist Bad Ponder (formerly Mohawk Fabric) which manufactures and distributes industrial and commercial textiles. Some $130,000 of CDBG funds; $435,000 equity and $40,000 from ESD was used to purchase equipment and install a solar energy system. The new equipment allowed Bad Ponder to meet the demand for its product without having to outsource to North Carolina. Eight jobs were created for low and moderate income workers. HCR also financed the rehabilitation of the 100-unit Mitchell Lama townhouse development, Woodrow Wilson, in Amsterdam.
In response to learning first-hand the unique challenges and opportunities that exist in the Mohawk Valley, Governor Cuomo announced:
HCR is awarding $2 million in financing for Roosevelt Residences in Utica’s Cornhill neighborhood. The project would consist of the new construction of 25 buildings on scattered sites throughout the neighborhood, which will produce 50 affordable units, while creating construction jobs.
HCR is awarding a $250,000 Affordable Housing Corporation (AHC) grant to the Gloversville Housing & Neighborhood Improvement Corporation. This will provide home improvement assistance to 30 owner-occupied units in the City of Gloversville. Scope of work includes repair/replacement of roofs, gutters, windows, doors and siding as well as upgrades to electrical, plumbing and heating systems.
HCR will conduct a “Main Street Boot Camp” early next year in the Mohawk Valley. This full-day conference is designed to help the Mohawk Valley region embrace opportunities and address issues facing the region’s Main Streets and downtown commercial districts. Workshop sessions addressing design, historic preservation, upper-story housing development and funding sources for rehabilitation will be offered. Additional details will be announced.