Home Housing & Development HCR, HPD, SHF Celebrate Groundbreaking of $20 Million Affordable Housing Development in...

HCR, HPD, SHF Celebrate Groundbreaking of $20 Million Affordable Housing Development in the Bronx

Transit-Oriented Complex with 60 New Units in the Mt. Eden Neighborhood Will Include Apartments and Support Services for Nine Homeless Households

Bronx, NY – October 2, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner James S. Rubin, New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Vicki Been, Settlement Housing Fund President Alexa Sewell celebrated the start of construction of a mixed-income 11-story complex at 1561 Walton Avenue in the Mt. Eden neighborhood of the Bronx. As a result, sixty households, including nine for homeless individuals, will have quality affordable housing, including on-site supportive services provided for the formerly homeless.

The project will be part of the overall New Settlement Apartment complex of buildings, which provides a neighborhood-based approach to housing, and includes a wide array of community programming.  Residents at 1561 Walton will have access to the many services offered nearby, including on-site access to college application assistance and work readiness training. The 400-square-foot community room will serve as the adjunct site for the adjacent College Access Center, which helps low-income high school students and adults apply to college. Settlement Housing Fund Inc. secured tax credits for the $20 million development from the state.

James S. Rubin, Commissioner of New York State Homes and Community Renewal said, “For more than 30 years, the Governor has been addressing the many causes of homelessness. His leadership has driven the state’s commitment to proactively tackle this complicated, dehumanizing and debilitating issue, helping men and women and children regain their footing, their pride, their health, and permanent homes. The State is addressing the current surge in homelessness with investments in supportive housing and programming here in New York City and upstate. The Settlement Housing Fund’s work in the Mt. Eden neighborhood is legendary; we are proud to finance this development with our partners and the Briarwood Organization, marking this as the 18th residential building for Settlement Housing Fund.”

“In Housing New York, the City committed to creating 80,000 new affordable units for low- and moderate-income New Yorkers across the five boroughs,” said HPD Commissioner Vicki Been. The construction of new affordable developments in New York City is one of the only ways we can hope to alleviate the burden of those in need of affordable housing. This new development at 1561 Walton Avenue in the Bronx is an important part of our drive to meet that goal. We’d like to thank those at HCR and in New York State for their partnership in this endeavor. We’d like to further thank the Settlement Housing Fund and all of our development partners who made this project a possibility.”

“We are proud to build on the legacy of New Settlement Apartments,” said Alexa Sewell, President of Settlement Housing Fund.  “We are grateful to the Briarwood Organization and to our many partners — public and private — for once again investing in Mt. Eden.  New Settlement Apartments is a source of stable, affordable housing, and is the anchor that has allowed community programming and services to grow.  1561 Walton will bring fresh architecture, new jobs, and an additional 60 families to the neighborhood.”

Senator José M. Serrano said, “This building represents a tremendous opportunity for many families in New York City. I applaud NYS HCR, NYC HPD and Settlement Housing Fund for completing this affordable, state-of-the-art 60-unit building on Walton Avenue and New Settlement for their ongoing commitment to affordability in our community. It is my hope that we can continue building affordable high quality housing like this across our city.”

“Access to affordable quality housing is an essential right for all New Yorkers and this new 60-unit apartment building being built on Walton Avenue marks an important contribution to making that important goal a reality,” Assemblywoman Latoya Joyner (D-Bronx, 77th AD) said. “The commitment of state support from NYSHCR, city assistance from NYC HPD, Settlement Housing Fund and the dedication of Jack Doyle and New Settlement Apartments, was invaluable in making today possible.  I want to thank everyone – including Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio – for making this new housing possible.”

There will be one studio, 19 one-bedroom apartments, 30 two-bedroom apartments, and nine three-bedroom apartments, which will serve families earning from 40% to 90% of the area median income. Thirty-one percent of the units will be available to households earning 50% of area medium income or less [$41,950 for a family of four]; twenty-four percent are reserved for those earning 60% or less [$50,340 for a family of four]; fifteen percent will be affordable to households earning 40% or less [$33,560 for a family of four]; and fifteen percent are offered to households earning 90% or less [$73,832 for a family of four]. Fifteen percent, nine apartments will be set aside for homeless individuals or families.

Energy-efficient lighting and appliances, low-flow plumbing fixtures and an insulated building envelope ensure the project’s sustainability through the 50-year term of affordability. The project will participate in the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority Multifamily Performance Program with the goal of reducing standard energy consumption by 15%, and will exceed standards for the Enterprise Green Communities program. As a transit-oriented development, the project is located within close proximity to two major subway and bus lines, allowing for ease of movement around the borough and the city.

The state’s investment in 1561 Walton Avenue includes $12.9 million in tax credits which will leverage a loan from the Community Preservation Corporation. Hudson Housing Capital is the tax credit syndicator. Additional financing was provided by New York City Housing Preservation and Development through the New York City HPD Extremely Low and Low Income Affordability (ELLA) Program. The total project cost is $20.9 million.

Residents of 1561 Walton will also have access to the New Settlement Community Campus. In 2012, Settlement Housing Fund and NSA opened the New Settlement Community Campus, built in partnership with the NYC School Construction Authority.  The 172,000 sq. ft. facility consists of two new public schools (pre-K – 5th grade and 6th – 12th grade), and special education classrooms for students with Autism, an amphitheater and outdoor play spaces, library/media center, auditorium, competition-size gym and auxiliary gym, and cafeteria with full-service kitchen and salad bar. It also houses a health clinic run by Montefiore’s Children’s Hospital with the latest technology throughout.

Attached to the schools and used by their students, other area schools and the public is a Community Center with a 75 ft. five-lane swimming pool, dance studios, cooking classroom, green roof learning terrace, multipurpose classrooms, atrium with art gallery, community meeting space and offices. Programs offered include swimming for babies, toddlers, children, adults, families and seniors, water exercise, capoeira and yoga, cooking and nutrition instruction, and dance classes offered by Alvin Ailey Arts in Education & Community Programs.

New Settlement Apartments has been a stabilizing force in the Mt. Eden neighborhood. The buildings have 2% vacancy rate and waitlist. Over time, and guided by the residents and community’s needs, New Settlement has added a robust offering of community programs. New Settlement provides a host of successful after school, college access and community programs that serve more than 10,000 youth and families each year. These include adult education classes, parent engagement and advocacy through the New Settlement Parent Action Committee, domestic violence counseling, summer camps, afterschool programs, supervised playgrounds, and job training and placement services.

About New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) 
New York State Homes and Community Renewal agencies include the Affordable Housing Corporation, the Division of Housing and Community Renewal, the Housing Finance Agency, State of New York Mortgage Agency, Housing Trust Fund Corporation and others. In 2014, HCR boasted a record year, financing the creation or preservation of 9,407 affordable housing units, including affordable homeownership opportunities for more than one thousand families. 2015 marks the third year of Governor Cuomo’s $1 billion statewide House NY program, whose goal is to create or preserve 14,300 affordable units by 2018.

About New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD)
The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) is the nation’s largest municipal housing preservation and development agency. Its mission is to promote quality housing and diverse, thriving neighborhoods for New Yorkers through loan and development programs for new affordable housing, preservation of the affordability of the existing housing stock, enforcement of housing quality standards, and educational programs for tenants and building owners. HPD is tasked with fulfilling Mayor de Blasio’s Housing New York: A Five-Borough Ten-Year Plan to create and preserve 200,000 affordable units for New Yorkers at the very lowest incomes to those in the middle class. For more information visit www.nyc.gov/hpd and for regular updates on HPD news and services, connect with us viawww.facebook.com/nychpd and www.twitter.com/nychousing.