After opposing former Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposed plan to fill open space owned by the New York City Housing Authority with mostly market rate housing, Mayor Bill de Blasio has revealed his own plan to help agency with its financial struggles.
While Bloomberg proposed a plan to build 80% low income housing and 20% market rate, de Blasio has outlined a 50/50 plan alone with 100% affordable to be built on the authority-owned lots. As part of his larger vision “NextGeneration NYCHA”, 10,000 affordable apartments will be built that will count toward the mayor’s goal of 80,000 new affordable housing apartments in the next decade.
The city released a request for proposals in July, inviting developers to bid on the first three authority properties slated for construction. Units to be built at the Ingersoll site in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, and Mill Brook in the Mott Haven section of the Bronx, housing units will be allotted to residents 62 years and older. New units to be built on a parking lot at Van Dyke in Brownsville, Brooklyn, will be reserved for families. The buildings, which will be 100 percent affordable housing, will include roughly 500 units in total. Current authority residents will be given preference for 25% of the new apartments.
“We must use every tool at our disposal to preserve public housing and create more affordable housing opportunities for seniors and families that are trying to make ends meet while living in the City they are proud to call home,” said Authority General Manager Michael Kelly.
However, de Blasio’s plan has its critics; many have argued against authority developing housing on the open space next to existing buildings. At a recent press conference to celebrate the beginning of an $87 million roof repair project at the Queensbridge Houses, the mayor addressed his opponents.
“I think what’s going to make this plan something that people will embrace is that it’s going to overwhelmingly create affordable housing, which everyone knows we need in this city, and it’s going to create a lot of new resources to fix problems in the development where it’s located,” he said.
Proposals are due Sept. 30.