Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Housing Development Corporation (HDC) President Emily A. Youssouf and HDC Board Chairman Shaun Donovan today announced that in 2006 HDC will provide $1.8 billion to finance the construction or preservation of more than 9,000 affordable apartments. This is the largest volume of financing and the greatest number of apartments built or preserved in one year since the corporation was chartered 35 years ago. HDC functions like a private mortgage bank for affordable housing in New York City. Its operations are self-financing, and it does not use any tax levy dollars.
“Private market initiatives can serve the public good,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “HDC, which serves only New York City, this year has issued more bonds for affordable apartment buildings than any other city or state agency in the nation. It has been a banner year for HDC, and as a result we are continuing to make record levels of investments in the future of all five boroughs.”
“I am proud to say that all our hard work creating new programs and restructuring old ones has given us another record year,” said HDC President Youssouf. “These programs are attracting private capital, and private developers, into affordable housing at a rate never seen before in New York City. The 25,500 apartments that we have financed under theNew Housing Marketplace Plan are the very real results of this innovation.”
“HDC can celebrate another great year helping to create and preserve affordable homes for thousands of New Yorkers,” said HDC Board Chairman and Housing and Preservation Development (HPD) Commissioner Shaun Donovan. “The Mayor’s New Housing Marketplace Plan is the largest municipal affordable housing plan in the nation’s history and we are ahead of target with almost 49,000 units financed so far. Conventional wisdom says that you can’t build affordable housing in a strong market, but New York City is saying the opposite. The Mayor’s Plan actually harnesses the strength of our booming housing market to build affordable housing and HDC’s innovative financing is a sterling example of how we are doing that.”
The financing provided by HDC is in the form of low-cost mortgages made by pooling the proceeds of the sale of tax-exempt and taxable bonds with money lent from its corporate reserves. These mortgages are provided to developers for the construction and preservation of affordable housing. HDC programs are designed for multi-family rental housing and cooperative developments and serve a wide range of income segments, from very-low to middle-income tenants.
HDC’s final board meeting for 2006 was held today. The Corporation agreed to provide up to $550 million in financing to build or preserve more than 2,000 affordable apartments across all five boroughs. These approvals bring the total investment HDC will make in housing this year to $1.8 billion, which includes $1.7 billion in bond proceeds and more than $92 million in low-interest loans from HDC’s corporate reserves.
Some of the developments represented in today’s approvals include:
HDC today agreed to provide at least $71.5 million in financing for buildings in the Bronx that will be reserved for households earning no more than $42,540 annually for a family of four, including these four buildings:
- 500 East 165th Street in Morrisania, which will have 129 affordable apartments and more than 4,600 square feet of commercial space
- The Monterey at 4278 Third Avenue in East Tremont, which will have 97 affordable apartments
- 1926 Crotona Parkway in Crotona Park, which will have 96 affordable apartments reserved for people aged 62 and over
- 1785 Walton Avenue in Morris Heights, which will have 63 affordable apartments also reserved for senior citizens
Today, HDC approved $22 million for financing of two buildings in Brooklyn:
- A new building to rise on a vacant lot at 346 Bergen Street in Boerum Hill, which will provide 24 apartments for middle-income families
- The conversion of the underused first six floors of the YWCA at Third and Atlantic Avenues into 84 apartments for low-income women
Developments from the Lower East Side to East Harlem were approved today as HDC agreed to provide at least $172 million for affordable housing in Manhattan, including:
- The construction of a 12-story building at Houston and Pitt Streets with 263 apartments for low-income households, many of them formerly homeless individuals who will have access to social services provided in the building; this building will replace a vacant Boys Club
- Construction of an eight-story, 84-unit building to be built at 1405 Fifth Avenue, between 115th and 116th Streets, across the avenue from 1400 on Fifth, an earlier HDC-financed building; this building will also include 8,200 square feet of retail space.
- Preservation of the 125 apartments at Casabe House, a senior citizen’s residence at 143 East 120th Street in East Harlem; today’s approval will allowed for enhanced social services and continued affordability for the low-income elderly residents of the building
- Construction of the Casablanca, a 48-unit middle-income rental building to replace the parking lot at 121-125 East 110th Street in East Harlem.
HDC today approved at least $49 million in financing for three buildings in Queens containing 484 apartments. Specifically:
- A 184-unit apartment building for low-income seniors will replace the 43,000 square foot municipal parking lot owned by the New York City Department of Transportation at 29th Street between Hoyt Avenue South and Astoria Boulevard near the Triborough Bridge approach in Astoria
- Preservation financing for two towers in Springfield Gardens with 300 apartments for seniors located at 166-01 Linden Boulevard.
HDC approved $25 million in financing today for the redevelopment of the Markham Gardens public housing project on the island’s north shore into a privately-owned mixed-income neighborhood with 23 three-story buildings containing a total of 240 apartments.