The 117-year-old tenement building received green upgrades, health and safety improvements, and upgraded kitchens and bathrooms

NEW YORK, NY – (RealEstateRama) — The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE), and Enterprise Community Loan Fund, Inc. (ECLF) today unveiled 81 Madison Street, a 20-unit building in Manhattan’s Chinatown neighborhood that was one of the first buildings to undergo HPD’s Green Housing Preservation Program, which provided financing for improvements to the non-profit-owned building. The $2.25 million preservation project brings important energy- and water-efficient upgrades to the 117-year-old building and will remain affordable for residents for at least the next 40 years.

HPD’s Green Housing Preservation Program (GHPP), which was created with input from Enterprise Community Partners, provide low- and no-interest loans to finance energy efficiency and water conservation improvements as well as moderate building rehabilitation. The program was designed to bolster the physical condition of properties and lower property utility expenses to preserve safe affordable housing for low- and moderate-income households in New York City.

“Key to safeguarding the long-term affordability of our city is ensuring the sustainability of our housing stock. The Green Housing Preservation Program helps owners make the energy efficient upgrades and building improvements that will result in long-term savings for them and their tenants,” said Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Maria Torres-Springer. “Through this and our new Neighborhood Pillars program, HPD is working with strong non-profit partners like AAFE and Enterprise Community Partners to acquire buildings and preserve affordability across our neighborhoods, protecting residents and the health of our city for generations to come.”

“Like so many buildings in Chinatown, 81 Madison was ripe to be purchased by a for-profit developer and converted into market rent. Instead of just another luxury rental, we have created, and now preserved, an oasis of affordability for our community, said AAFE Executive Director Christopher Kui. “We could not have done this without HPD and Enterprise and I thank them for supporting our building.“

“Preserving affordable housing in New York is critical, especially in rapidly changing neighborhoods like Chinatown,” said Judi Kende, Vice President and New York Market Leader, Enterprise. “We were honored to partner with AAFE on this renovation which has made 81 Madison Street greener, healthier, and affordable for the long term. It is a model that community development organizations across the city can look to for years to come.”

“When the cost of living skyrockets, too many of our City’s working and immigrant families are left behind. Today, we recognize this valuable and long-term investment in Chinatown’s residents. Thanks to this decision, more families will achieve peace of mind knowing that their home is not only affordable but built to thrive in the 21st century,” said Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez.

“It’s no secret that our community is facing an affordability crisis — and we all must work to create and preserve affordable housing. Asian Americans for Equality has long been a leader in our community, and this project exemplifies the critical work this organization does every single day,” said State Senator Brian Kavanagh. “This project both supports New Yorkers and protects the environment. It’s a win-win, and I’d like to congratulate HPD, AAFE, and the Enterprise Community Loan Fund for their success at 81 Madison.”

“We cannot sufficiently address the needs of the affordable housing crisis without having a serious conversation about sustainability,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin. “Too many residents are forced to accept unacceptable living conditions resulting from outdated, poorly maintained properties – further worsening the existing pressures of an increasingly unaffordable City.  With this plan, residents at 81 Madison Street can continue to live safely in the community they know and love.  Thank you to HPD and AAFE for your commitment to protect our most vulnerable residents, and for creating a bold model for affordability and sustainability that communities across the city can replicate.”

“Preserving affordable housing stabilizes neighborhoods and encourages economic growth, civic participation, arts and cultural activities, and a vibrant community,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “AAFE is taking preservation one step further by also retrofitting a building to energy- and water-efficient standards. Through HPD’s Green Housing Preservation Program, residents of 81 Madison will now live in a building that is free of lead paint and asbestos, and equipped with a modern, efficient electrical system and appliances. Combining long-term affordability with long-term sustainability is a winning formula for tenants and the wider community.”

The building received energy efficiency improvements, living space upgrades, and improvements for long-term tenant health and safety. Green upgrades included: energy efficient LED lighting throughout the building; energy efficient refrigerators; low-flow aerators for faucets and shower heads; bolstered exterior wall insulation; and weather stripping on exterior doors. Upgrades to tenant living spaces include: new kitchens, including cabinets, countertops, fixtures, stoves and refrigerators; new bathrooms including bathtubs, tiling, vanity, toilet, and fixtures; and replaced interior walls. Improvements to tenant health and safety include: remediated lead paint and asbestos; new water pipes; replaced and modernized electrical system and wiring; replaced wooden basement structural supports with steel; basement fire-stopping; hardwired smoke and CO2 detectors; grab bars; and stairway and common area lighting upgrades.

Con Edison provided Thermal Relief Valves free of charge as part of a pilot program to help older buildings improve energy efficiency. Thermal Relief Valves allow residents to modulate the heat in their apartments, eliminating the desire to open windows to regulate room temperature — a common practice in tenement “one-pipe” heating systems.

“81 Madison is an example of energy efficiency, sustainability, affordability and preservation all in one,” said Director of Energy Efficiency Programs for Con Edison Vicki Kuo. “Con Edison is proud to have had a role in this new housing initiative.”

AAFE originally acquired 81 Madison Street in 2012 as part of its Rebuild Chinatown Initiative designed to create and preserve affordable housing in Chinatown. The $2.25 million refinance and green rehabilitation deal comprises a $1,260,000 loan from the Enterprise Community Loan Fund to refinance the building and a $993,000 loan from HPD’s Green Housing Preservation Program to renovate the building.  The new financing extends the sustainability of the building as affordable housing by 15 years, through 2057. The recently announced Neighborhood Pillars program will also help more non-profit organizations like AAFE acquire and preserve buildings such as 81 Madison.

The Green Housing Preservation Program (GHPP) program advances the goals of the Mayor’s Housing New York 2.0 Plan, to create and preserve 300,000 units of affordable housing by 2026, and One City: Built to Last, the City’s ten year plan led by the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability to reduce GHG emissions from buildings by 30% below 2005 levels by 2025 in order to be on the pathway to an 80 percent reduction in citywide GHG emissions by 2050. For more information on the loan terms, see the GHPP term sheet.


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 Plan which was recently expanded and accelerated through Housing New York 2.0 to complete the initial goal of 200,000 homes two years ahead of schedule—by 2022, and achieve an additional 100,000 homes over the following four years, for a total of 300,000 homes by 2026.  For full details visit www.nyc.gov/hpd and for regular updates on HPD news and services, connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @NYCHousing.

About Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.
Enterprise Community Partners is celebrating 30 years in New York with a renewed commitment to a mission that is more important than ever: to create opportunity for low- and moderate-income people through affordable housing in diverse, thriving communities. The New York branch of the national organization invests capital to create and preserve quality affordable homes for low- and moderate-income people, reinvests revenues to develop programmatic solutions in coordination with public and private partners, and scales these solutions through policy change. Over the past 30 years, Enterprise has helped create over 57,000 homes and invested nearly $3 billion in New York, touching thousands of lives. Join us at www.EnterpriseCommunity.com or www.EnterpriseCommunity.org.

About Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE)
Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE) is a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of Asian Americans and all of those in need.  Founded in 1974 to advocate for equal rights, AAFE has transformed in the past four decades to become one of New York’s preeminent housing, social service and community development organizations.   AAFE is committed to preserving affordable housing throughout New York and to providing new opportunities for the city’s diverse immigrant communities.  Employing innovative approaches, the organization has preserved and developed 86 buildings, creating more than 800 units of housing. It has secured over $378 million in mortgage financing for homebuyers and disbursed over $44 million in loans to over one-thousand small businesses. Through a wide range of multilingual counseling services, AAFE provides education, financial assistance and training to empower people, small businesses and neighborhoods.

CONTACT: Matthew Creegan (HPD), 212-863-7879
Zach Bommer (AAFE), 646-822-0564