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NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development
Press Room


September 22, 1999

Carol Abrams
(212) 863-5176

Cassandra Vernon
(212) 863-8076


Water's Edge, a new housing development, is now in construction - the first new housing development in Arverne, Queens in 25 years

As part of the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development's (HPD) Homeownership Month, Commissioner Richard T. Roberts today attended a celebration for Water's Edge -- the first development under the newly created Arverne Home Ownership Program. Located in the Arverne Urban Renewal area - the largest tract of vacant urban renewal land in New York City - Water's Edge is the first new housing development in twenty five years in this Queens neighborhood. Construction started on this project in July 1999 and is scheduled to be completed by late 2000.

HPD Commissioner Richard T. Roberts said, "Water's Edge, a $12 million project is, indeed, good news for Arverne and good news for New York City. Today we can see the fruits of our labor which demonstrates what can be accomplished when Government, the private sector and the community work hand in hand. This project represents a tremendous investment by the City in this neighborhood."

To make the homes more affordable Borough President Claire Shulman is providing a total of $2.2 million in discretionary City Capital Budget funds which will be used to make the necessary infrastructure improvements, including re-paved streets and new sidewalks.

Borough President Claire Shulman said, "These Water's Edge homes will bring new market rate housing to the Rockaway Peninsula, along with infrastructure improvements. They will also spur economic growth, and increase the need for more schools, parks and other amenities. I am happy to support this long awaited housing development, the first in Arverne since the fiscal crisis of the mid-1970's. These new homes are part of the Rockaway renaissance we will see in the next millennium."

The forty, two-family homes are being built by the Briarwood Organization on in-fill sites between Beach 59th and Beach 61st Streets. The homes are targeted to middle-income home buyers and will be sold for approximately $227,000 to families earning between $40,000 and $133,000, and will take advantage of Arverne's unique location, offering ocean views and easy access to the beach.

The homes, which are currently being marketed by the Briarwood Organization, will feature gourmet kitchens with designer oak-faced cabinetry, ceramic tiles ceramic tile flooring, designer vanities and medicine cabinets in baths, off street parking, private garage on the lower level, plush wall to wall carpeting and a balcony on the upper level.

Vincent L. Riso, president of the Briarwood Organization, said," Since the homes have been on the market, we have had an overwhelming response. Currently, twelve homes are either under contract or about to go into contract."

Chase is providing the mortgages for the homes which are being offered with no closing costs to the buyers. The closing costs are being absorbed by Chase and the Brairwood Organization, the developer for the project.

Mark Willis, Community Development Group Executive at Chase, said, "Chase is proud to support this path breaking project for the people of Queens and New York City. Chase's loan will help strengthen the community by making home ownership happen."

HPD's programs are part of Mayor Giuliani's comprehensive initiative to rebuild New York City's neighborhoods and spur neighborhood growth. HPD's housing programs include the CityHome Program, HomeWorks Program, the Partnership New Homes Program and the Neighborhood Entrepreneurs Program (NEP).

HPD's mission is to promote quality housing and viable neighborhoods for New Yorkers. The department is the nation's largest municipal housing development agency. Since Fiscal Year 1994, the agency has completed the construction and rehabilitation of nearly 58,000 units of affordable housing.

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