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NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Eric Bederman (HPD) 212-863-5176


HPD AND HDC JOIN MET COUNCIL AND NYCHA TO CELEBRATE THE GRAND OPENING OF NEW SENIOR HOUSING IN QUEENS

Council Towers VI provides 78 units of affordable housing with on-site supportive services for senior citizens in the Pomonok neighborhood of Queens

QUEENS, NEW YORK - New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Mathew M. Wambua, New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC) President Marc Jahr, and New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) Chairman John Rhea joined MET Council to celebrate the opening of Council Towers VI in Queens. This building is the sixth in a series of completed senior housing buildings created through a partnership with MET Council designed to serve as supportive affordable housing for New York City residents 62 years of age and older. Council Towers VI, which was built on land provided by NYCHA, is located at 71st Avenue between Kissena and Parsons Boulevards in the Pomonok area of Queens.

Council Towers VI was developed under Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan (NHMP), a multibillion dollar 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 129,200 units of affordable housing across the five boroughs; 12,500 of those units in Queens with 2,598 units located in Community District 8 where Council Towers VI is located.

“Affordable housing is designed to meet the financial needs of residents. During these trying times we must go beyond that to continue to supportthe most vulnerable populations in the City,”said Commissioner Wambua. “I am proud to work with our partners at the New York City Housing Development Corporation, the New York City Housing Authority and Met Council to develop dynamic and safe supportive housing for the senior citizens of New York that provide both enriching programs to cater to the resident’s needs and a safe secure place to call home.”

”We deserve to be judged as a society according to how we tend to the needs of our most vulnerable neighbors,” said HDC President Jahr. “This sort of development, built through efforts of a consortium of concerned partners, is a testament to New Yorkers caring about the health and welfare of their own. I am proud that HDC has once again played a pivotal role; using a complex financial deal and applying a massive amount of expertise toward the effort to make this project a reality. Each deal is special: these are the bricks and mortar that help to bridge the gap between the need for supportive housing and our ability to provide this housing and its services.” 

“HUD has no higher mission than improving people’s lives and strengthening communities, and this wonderful senior development does just that,” said MirzaOrriols, Deputy Regional Administrator.  “The latest statistics indicate that one in five New York City residents live in poverty, many of whom, unfortunately, are the elderly living on meager pensions or income.  That is why nonprofit groups like the Met Council are so important in providing our elderly with decent, safe and affordable housing.  HUD is proud to be part of this wonderful public-private initiative and, as such,  we salute our partners, the Met Council, NYCHA, HPD,.HDC and the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York for their dedication in creating and preserving affordable housing in this great city.”

“NYCHA is proud to partner with Met Council, HUD, HPD, HDC, and the Federal home Loan Bank Board of New York in the development of affordable housing for our senior population,” said NYCHA Chairman John B. Rhea. “Through partnerships such as these, NYCHA can develop market-rate and mixed-income housing that will generate dollars to subsidize the creation of new housing. This effort helps fulfill NYCHA’s mission to increase opportunities for low- and moderate-income New Yorkers by providing safe, affordable housing as well as offer suitable living space for our seniors, especially those who currently occupy larger apartments than they currently need.”

Council Towers VI is an eight-story building with 77 one-bedroom rental units and one unit reserved for an on-site superintendent. Twenty-five percent of the units have a preference for existing NYCHA tenants. All units have a senior preference for tenants age 62 and older. The units will be available to tenants earning no more than 50 percentArea Median Income (AMI) or $28,650 for an individual. This building was developed under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s(HUD) Section 202 program.The tenant’s rentwill be set at 30% household income.

“New Yorkers are aging and we have to figure out how to house this vulnerable population.” explains William E. Rapfogel, Met Council CEO and Executive Director. “By helping our clients find a stable place to live, we are able to empower them to get their lives back on track. We are so grateful to the builders, developers and government agencies that support our mission of bringing affordable housing to communities in need.”

Residents of Council Towers VI have access to a variety of on-site services. Management staff will provide case management, benefits and entitlements advice and advocacy as well as on-site education and recreational activities. An experienced social worker will serve as a support service coordinator. Staff will be equipped to refer tenants to off-site licensed healthcare agencies to provide home care, adult daycare, hospital services, medical education, and nursing home options. Additional on-site services include Meals-On-Wheels, housekeeping assistance, counseling and recreational trips. Through New York State Department of Transportation, Met Council provides transportation for the elderly to essential appointments and recreational outings.

“Enterprise believes that all New Yorkers, particularly elderly New Yorkers, should have safe, quality and affordable homes where they can age in place,” said Abby Jo Sigal, Vice President and New York Market Leader, Enterprise. “We were thrilled to partner with Met Council to meet the growing needs of our senior community and provide over $5.8 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credit equity to make this innovative project possible.”

The site on which Council Tower VI is built was provided by NYCHA. HDC provided construction financing in a HDC First Mortgage amount of $10.2 million. The HDC First Mortgage will be paid down at conversion and is not counted in the total development cost. The total development cost of the project is nearly $20 million. HUD provided funding under Section 202 in the amount of $11.16 millionas well as a HUD Predevelopment Grant of $397,000. HPD provided approximately $1.8 million through the federal HOME Loan program, and the Federal Home Loan Bank Board of New York contributed $770,000 in permanent financing. Federal Low-IncomeHousing Tax Credits (LITHC) in the amount of approximately $5.8 million will be provided through Enterprise Community Partners.

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About the NYC Housing Development Corporation (HDC):

The Housing Development Corporation (HDC) provides a variety of financing programs for the creation and preservation of multi-family affordable housing throughout New York City. In partnership with the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development, HDC works to implement Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan to finance the creation or preservation of 165,000 affordable housing units by the end of the 2014 fiscal year. The New York City Housing Development Corporation is rated AA by S&P and Aa2 by Moody’s.www.nychdc.com

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, more than 129,200 affordable homes have been financed. www.nyc.gov/hpd

About New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA)

The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) provides decent and affordable housing in a safe and secure living environment for low and moderate- income residents throughout the five boroughs.  NYCHA also strives to enhance the quality of life by offering residents opportunities to participate in a multitude of community, educational and recreational programs, as well as job readiness and training initiatives. For more information:www.nyc.gov/nycha

About the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) aims to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD works to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; and build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination. For more information: www.hud.gov

About Met Council
Met Council is one of New York’s largest human services agencies, providing 100,000 New Yorkers with critical services in their fight against poverty every year.  For 36 years, Met Council has been an advocate and defender for New Yorkers in need, and has raised awareness around the growing problem of Jewish poverty.  With services ranging from domestic violence counseling to kosher food pantries to career training, Met Council helps individuals find lasting solutions to poverty. 

Met Council stands as a national leader in developing and managing affordable housing for low-income and vulnerable individuals and families throughout New York City. Working with private developers and government agencies, Met Council has developed and currently operates nearly 1,400 affordable housing units, with another 700 units in the pipeline.

Learn more at www.metcouncil.org.  

About Enterprise

Enterprise is a leading provider of the development capital and expertise it takes to create decent, affordable homes and rebuild communities. For 30 years, Enterprise has introduced neighborhood solutions through public-private partnerships with financial institutions, governments, community organizations and others that share our vision. Enterprise has raised and invested more than $11 billion in equity, grants and loans to help build or preserve more than 280,000 affordable rental and for-sale homes to create vital communities. Visit www.enterprisecommunity.org and www.enterprisecommunity.com to learn more about Enterprise's efforts to build communities and opportunity.

Since opening our New York office in 1987, Enterprise has created or preserved more than 35,000 affordable homes for 116,000 New Yorkers, and has committed over $2.3 billion in equity, grants, and loans to community development projects across the city. 

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