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NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 23, 2010

Eric Bederman (HPD): 212-863-5176


HPD, FIFTH AVENUE COMMITTEE HOST RIBBON CUTTING CEREMONY TO CELEBRATE OPENING OF BROOKLYN’S NEWEST AFFORDABLE, SUPPORTIVE HOUSING DEVELOPMENT

New Residential Development in South Park Slope is First LEED-Platinum Certified Supportive Housing Project in New York City

Brooklyn, NY – July 23, 2010 – Fifth Avenue Committee (FAC), New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), Amie Gross Architects and C&A Contractors cut the ribbon today to celebrate the completion of the newly constructed 575 Fifth Avenue, a 49-unit, affordable supportive housing development in South Park Slope, Brooklyn. 575 Fifth Avenue provides permanent rental homes for senior citizens, youth who have aged out of foster care and other low-income adults with special needs.

575 Fifth Avenue was developed under Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan (NHMP) to finance the creation or preservation of 165,000 affordable homes by 2014. Under the NHMP, launched by the Bloomberg Administration in 2003, New York City has already invested more than $4.5 billion and HDC has issued more than $5 billion in bonds to finance more than 108,000 homes on the way to the Plan’s target of 165,000 units.

At the ribbon cutting, Holly Leicht, Deputy Commissioner for Development at HPD; Michele de la Uz, Fifth Avenue Committee’s Executive Director; and Ron Zak, Fifth Avenue Committee’s Director of Development and Communications; were joined by Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz; Councilmember Brad Lander; Councilmember Sarah Gonzalez; and other community leaders and elected officials.

“As a former Fifth Avenue Committee Executive Director and advocate for affordable housing, I have long been an advocate for supportive housing complexes such as the one that we are opening here today,” noted Mr. Lander. “Buildings like these provide safe, affordable homes to people who need them, and can help to enrich the structure of the surrounding neighborhoods. As a resident of this neighborhood, and as the City Councilmember, I am thrilled to be able to welcome 575 Fifth Avenue to South Park Slope.”

“Beneath the numbers and statistics of the New Housing Marketplace Plan, what really matters is that we're creating safe, quality affordable homes for New Yorkers. I am proud to say that we are meeting those objectives here in South Park Slope, in an environment that provides for the special needs of tenants,” said HPD Deputy Commissioner for Development Holly Leicht. “575 Fifth Avenue exemplifies what can be accomplished when the City and our public and private partners come together for the common good of the community. This development could not have come to fruition without the vision and hard work of the Fifth Avenue Committee, and the leadership and support of our elected officials and community leaders.”

575 5th Avenue was financed with a loan from HPD’s Supportive Housing Loan Program; Low Income Housing Tax Credits syndicated by Richman Housing Resources; a loan from the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York; Reso A funds from Councilmember Sara Gonzalez and then-Councilmember Bill de Blasio; and a grant from NYSERDA. The total development cost for the project is $13.8 million.

Rents will be no higher than $745 a month for studio-style apartments, although through available rental subsidies, tenants could pay as little as $200 a month.  All tenants must be single adults earning less than $32,280 annually. Applications are no longer being accepted and tenants are already moving in. 575 Fifth Avenue offers tenants supportive services so that residents can live independently in the community. These on-site services are operated by the Center for Urban Community Services (CUCS) and are recovery-focused, outcome-oriented, person-centered, quality-driven, and based on best practices in the supportive housing field.

Fifth Avenue Committee’s Executive Director Michelle de la Uz explains: “FAC is extremely proud to be celebrating the completion of this model affordable, supportive housing project and to welcome the residents to their new home. 575 5th Avenue embodies FAC’s core mission and values - promoting an inclusive society, where everyone regardless of economic status, age or disability, is able to live with dignity and respect.”

As the city’s first LEED-Platinum Certified  supportive affordable housing development in New York City and New York State., 575 Fifth Avenue was built using a high quantity of recycled, renewable, locally produced and low or non-toxic building materials.  The building’s heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems are high-efficiency and gas-powered. There is also a fully landscaped backyard garden and rooftop green house. It 575 Fifth Avenue will be the first city-sponsored supportive housing development in Community Board 7, and the first new construction development of subsidized housing in many years. 575 Fifth Avenue was designed by with Amie Gross Architects and developed by C&A Contractors, to address the environmental and health issues found in New York City’s aging housing stock.                                               

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About Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan

New York City’s affordable housing program to build or preserve 165,000 units of housing — enough to house half a million New Yorkers — is the most ambitious and productive in the nation—creating housing as well as jobs for New Yorkers. In April, 2010 the City reached the critical benchmark of 100,000 units financed—representing an investment of $4.5 billion to date by the City, not including roughly $5 billion in bonds issued by HDC.

Led by HPD Commissioner Rafael E. Cestero, the Plan has been recast to maintain production momentum while confronting head-on the economic challenges facing the City, the State, the housing industry, the financial sector and individual New Yorkers and their families. In order to fulfill the NHMP goal of 165,000 units, HPD and the NYC Housing Development Corporation (HDC) are responding to market realities and focusing on three primary goals: strengthening neighborhoods, expanding the supply of affordable and sustainable housing and stabilizing families by keeping them in their homes. To read more about the NHMP, please visit http://www.nyc.gov/html/hpd/html/about/plan.html.   

About the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD)

HPD is the nation’s largest municipal housing preservation and development agency. Its mission is to promote quality housing and viable neighborhoods for New Yorkers through education, outreach, loan and development programs and enforcement of housing quality standards. It is responsible for implementing Mayor Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan to finance the construction or preservation or 165,000 units of affordable housing by 2014. Since the plan’s inception, more than 108,000 affordable homes have been created or preserved. For more information, visit www.nyc.gov/hpd.  

About Fifth Avenue Committee, Inc.

The Fifth Avenue Committee, Inc. (FAC) is a Brooklyn based community development corporation. FAC works to advance social and economic justice in South Brooklyn. They focus on developing and managing affordable housing and community facilities in the Brooklyn area. 575 Fifth Avenue is their newest development project. For more information, visit http://www.fifthave.org

About Amie Gross Architects

Amie Gross Architects (AGA) has been building in New York City since 1984.  AGA works with not-for-profit organizations, developers, government agencies, healthcare providers, corporations, and retailers. AGA has received many awards for their use of architecture to solve social problems and create efficient and harmonious environments. They serve a variety of clients: individual consumers, families with a range of incomes, the homeless, and people with special needs. For more information, please visit: http://www.amiegrossarchitects.com




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