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NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Eric Bederman (HPD) 212-863-5176



More Than 30 Proposals Submitted To Design and Build Micro-Unit Project at 335 East 27th Street 

Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert K. Steel and NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Mathew M. Wambua announced that the agency had received a robust response to the City’s adAPT NYC competition, a pilot program to develop a new housing model for the City’s growing small-household population. Mayor Bloomberg made the announcement and released the Request for Proposals (RFP) on July 9th, seeking a development team to design and build a rental building composed primarily, or entirely, of micro-unit apartments anticipated to be between275 and 300 square feet. By the submission deadline of September 14th HPD had received 33 proposals, with the RFP having been downloaded more than 1,600 times inhundreds of cities domestically and abroad. 

The adAPT initiative is part of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan (NHMP). The NHMP is a multi-billion dollar initiative to finance 165,000 units of affordable housing for half a million New Yorkers by the close of Fiscal Year 2014. For every dollar invested by the City, the Plan has leveraged $3.41 in private funding for a total commitment of more than $19.4 billion to fund the creation or preservation of more than 141,000 units of affordable housing across the five boroughs. 

“Mayor Bloomberg’s innovative adAPT initiative has captured the imagination of developers and housing experts around the world and around the country, and we’re thrilled to have seen such a strong response to his call for proposals to bring a new housing option to the New York market,” Deputy Mayor Robert K. Steel said. “This project is about small apartments, but it’s clear this is another big idea from Mayor Bloomberg.” 

“The City’s adAPT NYC competition has ignited a global interest and conversation about how high-density urban centers can right-size their housing stock to fit changing demographics and to do it in a way that is safe, responsible, comfortable, and sustainable,” said Commissioner Wambua. “I am excited about the level of interest demonstrated by the number of responses to the RFP. We will be reviewing these submissions over the next few months and expect to designate a developer early next year.” 

The 33 submissions that were received by HPD represent proposals to design, finance, build, and manage the property.  Two design/development teams are comprised of partners from abroad; one from London and one from Amsterdam. There are also design/development teams representing other states; one from New Jersey and one from Massachusetts. Included in the submissions are proposals that suggest the use of modular design and some that include green/sustainable design such as solar paneling. 

Since Mayor Bloomberg announced the RFP on July 9th it has been downloaded from the HPD website more than 1,600 times. These downloads include all five New York City boroughs and U.S. cities,including: Boston, Baltimore, Chicago, Princeton, Berkley, San Francisco, Greenwich, Philadelphia, Washington, Portland, Miami, Tampa, Dallas, Tacoma, Denver and others. The RFP has also been downloaded incities across the globe,including:Quebec, Montreal, Athens, Lima, Sydney, Melbourne, Bangalore, Paris, Milan, Berlin, Copenhagen, Innsbruck, Rotterdam, Jerusalem, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Taipei, Zurich, and many more. A pre-submission conference was then scheduled for July 31 so that designers and developers could meet face to face with agency staff to ask technical questions to help better refine their proposals. More than 300 people attended the conference in person, while more than 600 live-streamed the event via the internet. HPD hopes to announce the winning proposal of the adAPT NYC competition in early 2013. 

Currently New York City has 1.8 million one- and two-person households, but only one million studios and one-bedrooms. The adAPT NYCcompetition seeks creative proposals for a rental building composed primarily, or completely, of micro-units apartments. New York City’s regulations currently do not allow an entire building of micro-units. Under this pilot program, certain zoning regulations will waivedon a City-owned site at 335 East 27th Street in the Kips Bay neighborhood of Manhattan to test the market for this new housing model. 

At least 75 percent of the units in the building will be micro-units, which are expected to measure approximately 275 to 300 square feet. These efficient, self-contained units will include kitchens and bathrooms. The RFP design guidelines encourage the development of a mixed-use building with apartments that have substantial access to light and air to create a sense of openness. Responses will be judged on affordability and competitive land purchase price; innovative micro-unit layout and building design; and experience developing housing in New York City. For more information on the adAPT NYC competition please visit the HPD website at 

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 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 141,000 affordable homes have been created or preserved. Visit:

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