Groundbreakings were held in October for low-income senior housing at
Pomonok Houses in Queens and for affordable housing at Elliott-Chelsea Houses in
Manhattan. And while the residences will not be run by NYCHA, some units will be
made available to public housing residents.
Covering 25,000 square feet of land, what once was a parking lot at
Pomonok Houses, will be the site of Council Towers VI, an eight-story building
with 78 one-bedroom units with eco-friendly features and supportive services for
low-income senior citizens. The seniors are able to live independently as part
of the federal Supportive Housing for the Elderly Program. NYCHA transferred the
land to the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty (Met Council).
For the first time ever in this type of housing development, seniors
residing in NYCHA’s public housing will receive preference for 19 of the units.
First priority will be given to Pomonok Houses senior residents and second
priority to seniors living in other NYCHA developments. Once
the seniors move out of public housing and into Council Towers VI, there will be
a ripple effect on NYCHA’s waiting list that will likely benefit large families.
A typical NYCHA senior who has raised their family in public housing and has
aged in place long after their children have moved on, live in multi-bedroom
units that will be freed up to accommodate large families on the waiting
“Council Towers VI not only will be a new home for
several of NYCHA’s seniors,” said NYCHA Chairman John B. Rhea, “but it will
allow us to offer the benefit of housing to another generation of New Yorkers,
Amenities at the new senior residence will include a community room, an
outdoor seating area and a variety of educational and recreational activities.
Met Council will provide replacement parking spaces for Pomonok Houses residents
to make up for the ones lost to construction.
In Manhattan, sections of land from Elliott and Chelsea Houses will be
home to a new 22-story rental apartment building, consisting of 168
apartments overall. Thirty-four units will be reserved for NYCHA residents
falling within set income levels. Twenty-eight of the units are reserved for
residents earning no more than 50 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI), which
would be no more than $26,900 for a single person or $38,400 for a household of
four. The remaining six units will be reserved for residents earning no more
than 40 percent of AMI, making single persons and four-person households
eligible at $21,520 and 30,720 respectively.
First priority for the apartments will be given to current residents of
Elliott and Chelsea Houses. The project will also include 30 replacement parking
spaces for residents at the developments and NYCHA employees, and more than
7,000 square feet of retail space on the ground level.
Development of Council Towers VI and the Elliott Chelsea
Building on NYCHA grounds, is part of a larger plan to develop more affordable
housing on NYCHA properties.
By Brent Grier
October 25, 2010