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NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Eric Bederman (HPD) 212.863.5176


HPD COMMISSIONER WAMBUA, HDC PRESIDENT JAHR, WELLS FARGO AND ARKER COMPANIES ANNOUNCE $66.6 MILLION TO PRESERVE THREE QUEENS APARTMENT BUILDINGS

Financing To Preserve 328 Units of Affordable Housing At Oceanview Apartments And Heyson Gardens In Rockaways

 Queens, N.Y. – NYC Housing Development Corporation (HDC) President Marc Jahr, NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Mathew M. Wambua, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Acting Regional Administrator Mirza Orriols, along with the Arker Companies Principal Daniel Moritz and Wells Fargo Community Capital Group Head Matthew Weiner today announced a total investment of $66.6 million to renovate three affordable multifamily properties in the Rockaway section of Queens. The Arker Companies will use the funds to acquire and rehabilitate the three properties.  The three buildings, Oceanview Apartments 1 and 2 and Heyson Gardens, a senior citizens’ residence, are more than three-and-a-half decades old and in need of comprehensive maintenance and major systems replacement. The low-cost financing from the City will ensure that the 328 apartments in the three buildings remain affordable for low-income tenants. 

The preservation of Oceanview Apartments and Heyson Gardens is being financed 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 more than 129,000 units of affordable housing across the five boroughs and 12,065 units in Queens, more than 5,400 of in which are in Queens Community Board 14 where both Oceanview Apartment complexes and Heyson Gardens are located. 

“We are dedicated to providing the residents of New York City with affordable housing opportunities and investing in the existing housing stock is not only important; it is a means to achieving this end. With this deal, we are buying a new beginning for these buildings while ensuring that the cost of the renovation doesn’t put these units out of financial reach of the low-income households for which they were originally built,” said HPD Commissioner Mathew Wambua. “Thanks to our partners, HDC, HUD, Freddie Mac, Wells Fargo, and Arker Companies for playing an important role in the revitalization of our neighborhoods and for remaining dedicated to keeping affordable housing a viable component of the New York City housing market.” 

HDC President Jahr said: “The preservation and renovation of existing affordable housing is a core goal of Mayor Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan, and for good reason: this housing is irreplaceable.  In the course of our efforts to stabilize neighborhoods, improve the quality of life and to keep New York City affordable, HDC has financed the preservation of more than 38,500 units in New York City. We do this to ensure that the renovations are done right and that the loan is affordable and does not put undue financial stress on the buildings’ bottom line. Our deals are structured to minimize debt in exchange for restrictive covenants that keep rents low and protect the rights of the tenants.”  

“The preservation of Oceanview Apartments and Heyson Gardens as quality affordable housing demonstrates what can be accomplished when government and the private sector work together,” said HUD Acting Regional Administrator Mirza Orriols. “This is especially impressive given the continued housing slump and the scarcity of credit.  I applaud the Arker Companies and Wells Fargo for answering the call to meet the ever-growing need for affordable housing throughout the five boroughs.  I am proud of HUD’s investment and congratulate all our partners who have made this possible.” 

Oceanview 1, located at 14-10 New Haven Avenue, and Oceanview 2, located at 249 Beach 15th Street, were built in 1973 and 1975, respectively. Each building contains 149 units. Heyson Gardens was originally constructed in 1976 and contains 30 units for seniors aged 62 and over. Planned repairs and improvements to all three multifamily complexes include major building systems and apartment interiors. Additionally, there will be elevator and security upgrades along with masonry repairs. Prior agreements concerning affordability on the buildings would have ended within the next ten years. Under the terms of the new financing deal, affordability will be maintained for an additional 30 years through to the year 2041. All of the units will be reserved for low-income households earning 60 percent or less of the Area Median Income (AMI), which is equivalent to a household income at or below $46,080 for a family of four. 

“The Arker Companies are dedicated to the long-term preservation of affordable housing, and are thrilled to have the opportunity to preserve 328 units, while investing substantial capital for major improvements throughout,” said Daniel Moritz, Principal of the Arker Companies, “I thank Mayor Bloomberg for his ongoing New Housing Marketplace Plan, as well as HDC, HPD, HUD Wells Fargo and Freddie Mac for their work on the project.” 

“Wells Fargo is committed to investing in our communities,” said Matthew Weiner, Group Head at Wells Fargo Community Capital. “As one of the few banks that have the resources to meet all the financial needs this transaction required, we are honored to work alongside Arker Companies to preserve and create affordable housing in this market.” 

HDC issued more than $41 million in tax-exempt fixed-rate bonds backed by Wells Fargo and Freddie Mac under the Obama Administration’s New Issue Bond Program (NIBP). NIBP supports the development or renovation of affordable multifamily properties. HPD is providing an annual allocation in Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC). Wells Fargo, the LIHTC investor, also originated the Freddie Mac credit enhanced financing and provided a $20.5 million in Tax Credit Equity. Arker Companies contributed $4.7 million toward the development. Additionally, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) agreed to extend the projects’ Section 8 contracts for an additional 20 years. 

“We are thrilled about the new ownership of Oceanview and look forward to enjoying the results of the capital improvement plan,” said Doris Davis, president of the Oceanview II Tenants Association. 

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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. Since the plan launched in 2003, HDC financed nearly 47,521 homes for low- , moderate- and middle-income New Yorkers. The New York City Housing Development Corporation is rated AA by S&P and Aa2 by Moody’s. 

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, a total of more than 129,220 affordable homes have been created or preserved. For more information, visit www.nyc.gov/hpd  

About Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.3 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 stores, 12,000 ATMs, the Internet (wellsfargo.com), and other distribution channels across North America and internationally. With more than 272,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in America. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 23 on Fortune’s 2011 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially.  

Wells Fargo provides nationwide commercial real estate banking, capital markets, and advisory services in a single platform that includes lending, syndications, debt placement, equity raising and underwriting, mergers and acquisitions and servicing. Wells Fargo was ranked as the nation’s largest commercial real estate lender and servicer and top multifamily lender by the Mortgage Bankers Association for 2010; was named the largest issuer of preferred stock REIT equity and the largest domestic REIT and real estate bookrunner by Thompson Financial in 2010; and was named the most active brokerage of large commercial real estate sales in 2010 by Real Estate Alert. For more about the Wells Fargo commercial real estate platform visit: www.wellsfargo.com/realestate

About Arker Companies

The Arker Companies has been building projects in New York City for more than 30 years. Located in Floral Park on Long Island, the development company contracts, owns, and manages multi-family and single-family housing, and retail and office projects.  It is one of the leading developers of affordable housing in New York in its building of more than 4,000 units, for rent and for sale.  Arker also develops market-rate, commercial and mixed-used projects.  Company principals are Sol, Allan and Alex Arker and Daniel Moritz. 

About HUD

HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers.  In addition, HUD meets the need for quality affordable rental homes, utilizing housing as a platform for improving quality of life, and building inclusive and sustainable communities which are free from discrimination.  

About Freddie Mac 

Since the launch of Freddie Mac's multifamily business in 1993, it has provided more than $214 billion in financing for approximately 56,000 multifamily properties.  

Freddie Mac was established by Congress in 1970 to provide liquidity, stability and affordability to the nation's residential mortgage markets. Freddie Mac supports communities across the nation by providing mortgage capital to lenders. Over the years, Freddie Mac has made home possible for one in six homebuyers and more than five million renters. 




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