May 9, 2022
Nevins Street Apartments Adds 129 Affordable and Supportive Homes to Downtown Brooklyn With 6,000 Square Feet of Retail Space
NEW YORK – New York Governor Kathy Hochul, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, and the Institute for Community Living (ICL) today announced the completion of Nevins Street Apartments, a $72 million mixed-use housing development that creates accessible, supportive and affordable homes in Downtown Brooklyn. The development complex includes a renovation of a century-old building and the construction of a new, adjacent 10-story building. Nevins Street Apartments features 129 affordable apartments, including 78 supportive homes reserved for individuals who need tailored services to live independently and 6,000 square feet of commercial space.
“In the wake of the pandemic, it is critical that we take bold action to make New York a more affordable place for all, and that is why my administration launched a comprehensive $25 billion affordable housing plan to help ensure every New Yorker has access to safe, affordable housing,” said Governor Hochul. “New York is committed to tackling the housing crisis with transformative projects like Nevins Street Apartments that drive neighborhood revitalization and provide New Yorkers with the support and stability they need to thrive.”
“We need to solve the crisis of homelessness with the crisis of housing, and I am proud to have supported a project as borough president and now as mayor that helps us do exactly that,” said Mayor Adams. “This project represents exactly what we need more of in New York City: collaboration between city and state to provide affordable homes for families in shelters, New Yorkers struggling with mental health challenges, or veterans who have served our country bravely and need a place to call home.”
“This building takes the concept of ‘Housing is Health Care’ to a new level,” said Jody Rudin, CEO, ICL. “Tenants won’t just get a beautiful, safe place to call home, they’ll also get the whole health services they need to be better and stay well. This type of building is essential to addressing the dual homeless and mental health crisis in New York City. We are thrilled to open it and to continue to work with New York City and New York State to create more housing.”
Nevins Street Apartments is part of Governor Hochul’s sweeping plans to make housing more affordable, equitable, and stable. The governor has introduced and successfully secured, in the recently enacted state budget, a new $25 billion, five-year, comprehensive housing plan that will increase housing supply by creating or preserving 100,000 affordable homes across New York, including 10,000 with support services for vulnerable populations, plus the electrification of an additional 50,000 homes.
Mayor Adams supported the Nevins Street Apartments project as Brooklyn borough president with $500,000 in discretionary funding in fiscal year 2021. The project’s completion comes as he continues to tackle the city’s affordable housing and homelessness crises.
Nevins Street Apartments has a total of 129 apartments across two buildings that share a common core. The development includes the substantial rehabilitation of an existing building originally constructed in 1912 as a single-room occupancy residential facility by the YWCA for single women. Over the last 30 years, ICL has operated the building as an Office of Mental Health-licensed transitional housing facility. The redevelopment converted the existing single rooms into self-contained apartments.
The newly constructed 10-story building stands on an adjacent parking lot. Amenities include common laundry facilities, 24/7 front desk security, a community room, a gym and yoga room, and a classroom.
Of the 129 apartments, 78 are reserved for individuals formerly experiencing homelessness, veterans, young adults, and individuals recovering from a substance use disorder. The remaining apartments are affordable to households earning at or below 60 percent of the area median income. There is one apartment reserved for a superintendent.
Residents will have access to ICL’s comprehensive onsite support services, including counseling, parenting and life skills, family reunification and stabilization, health education, social and recreational services, and linkage to community services.
The residential complex is located on Nevins Street between Schermerhorn and State Streets in Downtown Brooklyn. The development’s retail space will face Schermerhorn Street, the neighborhood’s major commercial corridor. Residents will enjoy easy access to nearby transit and all major services, including shopping, medical care, and public facilities.
The developer is the Institute for Community Living.
State financing for the development includes $13.6 million in tax-exempt bonds, federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits that generated $27.3 million in equity, and $9 million in subsidy from New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR). The New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) will provide $1.9 million annually for rental assistance and services for the supportive units through the Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative. The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) provided $10.6 million from the Supportive Housing Loan Program.
“Taking a century-old building and creating 129 affordable and supportive homes for some of our most vulnerable New Yorkers demonstrates the type of collaboration and vision needed to combat homelessness and strengthen communities,” said Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas. “Under Governor Hochul’s leadership, we will continue to increase the supply of decent and affordable housing across Brooklyn’s diverse neighborhoods and in every region of the state. Our thanks to the city of New York and the Institute for Community Living for their partnership on this important investment.”
“More than half of the affordable homes at Nevins Street Apartments are set aside for New Yorkers experiencing homelessness, who will also have access to supportive services provided by the Institute for Community Living,” said HPD Commissioner Adolfo Carrión Jr. “Each apartment represents a lifeline to someone in need of housing, enabling them to live healthier lives in the safety and comfort of their own home. Thank you to ICL and our partners at the state for making this project possible, and, to the new residents of Nevins Street Apartments, welcome home.”
“COVID-19 has ravaged America, hurt countless small businesses and deepened the affordable housing crisis. The pandemic has hit Central Brooklyn hard, and we must all do everything in our power to get the people who live here through these challenging times,” said U.S. Representative Hakeem Jeffries. “The Nevins Street Apartments will bring affordable housing and good-paying jobs to Downtown Brooklyn, and I thank Governor Hochul and Mayor Adams for their leadership. It is a big win for our borough.”
“Our borough and our neighborhoods work best when dedicated organizations like the Institute for Community Living step forward to offer concrete solutions to problems before us and to provide compassionate service to the community,” said New York State Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon. “I’m simply thrilled to celebrate the opening of ICL’s Nevins Street Apartments which will provide much needed affordable apartments, including supportive housing and an array of services. I look forward to welcoming our new neighbors to the community and thank ICL for the tremendous hard work.”
“The Nevins Street Apartments serve as an example of what should be kept in mind as new developments are being planned for and built in communities in dire need of affordable units,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “This development not only was built on a parking lot - bringing a much more valuable use to this land - but also reserves apartments that will cater to vulnerable populations, including the formerly homeless and at-risk young adults, and will have conveniently located amenities. All developers should be thinking this comprehensively when planning the future of city housing.”
“ICL has been providing excellent services for Brooklynites in need for decades and I am thrilled to welcome new residents into the gut-rehabbed and expanded Nevins supportive housing development,” said New York City Councilmember Lincoln Restler. “Supportive housing is critical to solving our housing and homelessness crises and I'm excited to keep doing everything we can to bring more supportive housing developments to our community.”
“Dattner Architects has had the honor of collaborating with ICL and Mega Construction Group to complete this bold repositioning of ICL’s flagship facility as a modern affordable housing building in Downtown Brooklyn. The extensive renovations of the existing building will not only make the building fully accessible but will also improve the energy performance of the building with efficient systems coupled with on-site renewable power generation,” said Dattner Architects Principal John Woelfling. “In addition to the renovation, the project was able to expand the building footprint and density of the project through a rezoning that required support from the New York City Department of City Planning and community partners. As the saying goes, ‘It takes a village’.”
“We’re proud to deliver 50 Nevins to the community, marking a great step forward to providing affordable and supportive housing to local residents in need. This is a project that is especially important to Mega Contracting due to our long-term commitment to the building,” said Mega Contracting Group Vice President Hercules Argyriou. “Mega was first brought in to rehab the existing building, Stepping Stone Residence, in 1998 and we’ve remained committed to improving the building since then. 50 Nevins will not only provide the community with affordable housing options, but critical services needed for residents. We’re happy to partner with ICL, Dattner, and the state of New York to help bring this project to fruition.”