Liberty Apartments Earn Energy $mart Rating and Also Designed to Accommodate New Yorkers with Disabilities
NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Mathew M. Wambua, joined Dunn Development Corp., Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation and JPMorgan Chase in celebrating the grand opening of the Liberty Apartments. Located in East New York, Brooklyn at 119 Fountain Avenue, this development provides 43 new units of affordable housing for low-income New Yorkers. The Liberty Apartments was recognized by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) as having met the requirements to be considered an Energy $mart development.
The Liberty Apartments were developed under Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan (NHMP), an $8.5 billion initiative to finance 165,000 units of affordable housing for half a million New Yorkers by the close of the 2014 fiscal year. To date, the plan has funded the creation or preservation of over 125,000 units of affordable housing across the five boroughs; 29,694 of those units in Brooklyn with 5,110 units located in Community District 5 where the Liberty Apartments is located.
“Success is more than putting up a building. It is creating something that serves the needs its families and adds to the vitality and diversity of the neighborhood,” said HPD Commissioner Mathew M. Wambua. “The Liberty Apartments more than fits the bill with its state-of-the-art green technology, and a special focus given to the needs of New Yorkers with developmental disabilities. It is this commitment to excellence that keeps New York City in the forefront of the affordable housing industry. I thank Dunn Development, Cypress Hills LDC, HCR, JP Morgan and all of our partners for helping to lead the way in creating a more affordable and sustainable city for all New Yorkers.”
“We wanted to show that it’s possible to build a beautiful building, make it highly energy efficient and still provide affordable rents and serve a diverse group of people,” said Martin Dunn, President of Dunn Development Corp. “Working together with HPD, HCR, NYSERDA and Cypress Hills LDC, we have achieved that vision with Liberty Apartments.”
The project site originally encompassed 15 City-owned properties and two privately-owned properties. The new Liberty Apartments include 6 studios, 15 one-bedrooms, 20 two-bedrooms and 2 three-bedroom units. 15 units are reserved for tenants earning 30 percent of Area Median Income (AMI), ($24,550 for a family of four), and 27 units are reserved for tenants earning up to 60 percent of AMI ($49,080 for a family of four). The energy-efficient development features high-efficiency boilers for heating and hot water, Energy Star appliances, low VOC paints, ventilation systems that improve air quality and green elevator technology along with other environmentally conscious attributes. Additionally, the development includes a large community room, outdoor children’s play area, resident garden, and off-street parking.
Seven of the units are fully accessible and move-in ready for persons who have disabilities—five for people with mobility impairments and two for people with hearing or vision impairments. Each unit will receive a subsidy from the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities through The Center for Family Support Inc., a nonprofit agency that provides on-site support services to help their consumers live independently. All units are easily adaptable for persons with mobility, visual or hearing impairments, and all of the public areas are fully handicapped accessible.
"The Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation is proud of Liberty Apartments and our partnership with Dunn Development Corp.,” said Michelle Neugebauer, Executive Director of Cypress Hills LDC. “This partnership along with the help of HPD, HCR, the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities and JP Morgan Chase produced this deeply affordable, energy efficient and beautiful building. Liberty Apartments is a testament to the community progress being made by Cypress Hills/East New York's residents and community organizations as we come together and rebuild block-by-block with the support of our elected representatives, government and the private sector."
“As New York City’s largest bank and largest private employer, JPMorgan Chase is committed to investing in projects that have a positive, sustainable impact on the communities where we operate,” said David Walsh, senior vice president of Chase Community Development Banking. “The Liberty Apartments will bring much-needed affordable and accessible housing for Brooklyn residents.”
Liberty Apartments’ total development cost of $12 million was funded through various sources. JPMorgan Chase Bank provided a construction loan of $3,200,000 and a permanent loan of $960,000. Through its Low Income Rental Program, HPD provided $3,016,503 in City Capital and Federal HOME funds as construction and permanent loans. HPD also provided an additional $1,505,000 in NYC Housing Trust Fund Program funds as construction and permanent sources. NYSERDA provided $107,529 through its Multifamily Performance Program. JPMorgan Capital Corporation, provided $6.278 million in LIHTC Equity based on a 9% low income housing tax credit allocation from NYS HCR.
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 of 165,000 units of affordable housing by 2014. Since the plan’s inception, over 125,000 affordable homes have been created or preserved. For more information, visit www.nyc.gov/hpd.
About Dunn Development Corp.
Dunn Development Corp. is a socially-conscious, award-winning real estate developer with expertise in affordable and supportive housing. The company’s mission is to build the highest quality housing for low and middle-income New Yorkers, including those with disabilities and other special needs. Dunn Development Corp. has developed innovative financing and program models and has pioneered the integration of people with special needs in mainstream settings. Using only the most experienced architects and general contractors, the firm has set new standards of excellence in affordable housing design and construction. To learn more about Dunn Development Corp. and all of its projects, please visit www.dunndev.com.
About Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation (CHLDC)
The Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation (CHLDC) was founded in 1983 by neighborhood residents and merchants to revitalize the Cypress Hills community after a period of disinvestment and upheaval in the late 1970s. From its beginnings, CHLDC's leadership adopted a comprehensive approach to neighborhood building: preserving the housing stock, supporting economic development, and investing in residents by offering educational, creative, recreational, and leadership development opportunities throughout
the area. CHLDC serves over 8,000 residents a year at 15 different locations, developed 350 units of affordable housing, and established two alternative public schools, including the Cypress Hills Community School, for which CHLDC built Brooklyn’s first green school building. CHLDC’s subsidiary, the Cypress Hills Child Care Corporation, runs a family day care network, an In-Home Head Start program, and a day care center. Together, these programs strengthen the community's physical and economic infrastructure, provide quality educational and social services, and foster local leaders.