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In revitalizing Lower Manhattan the LMDC made a priority to allocate $50 million for affordable housing projects.
Projects & Programs > Affordable HousingAffordable Housing
During LMDC’s historic public process, resident’s and community leaders consistently stressed the need for affordable housing in a newly revived Lower Manhattan. Recognizing that affordable housing helps to expand and ensure a diverse residential population, which creates a strong sense of community throughout Lower Manhattan, the LMDC allocated $50 million for affordable housing projects.
Chinatown/Lower East Side Acquisition
LMDC proposes the allocation of $16 million for the preservation and rehabilitation of 160 or more units through the Chinatown/Lower East Side Acquisition and Preservation Program (Chinatown/LES Program). The new HPD administered program would be created with an objective of facilitating the acquisition and rehabilitation of privately owned properties in Chinatown and the Lower East Side. This program will establish housing that is permanently affordable under rent stabilization. The program focuses on the acquisition of mid-size buildings (15-40 units) that currently have all or a portion of the units under rent stabilization, where average rents are under $1,000. Eligible borrowers for this program would be non-profit residential property managers and developers, who would agree to keep units under rent stabilization for a term of 30 years. Additionally, upon vacancy, non-stabilized units must be lowered to the average stabilized rent and returned to rent stabilization. The Chinatown/LES Program aims to benefit households benefit households up to 80% of AMI.
This new mixed-use development project will consist of market rate condominiums, commercial retail space, and a mixed-income residential rental building. The residential rental building will be a mid-rise building facing Greenwich Street above a two-story retail base and underground parking. Prior to September 11, 2001, Site 5B had been planned as an entirely a commercial project. However, shortly after September 11, 2001, the City reexamined its vision for Lower Manhattan and determined that Site 5B was better suited for a mixed-use development that was largely residential, with a goal to include meaningful affordable housing. LMDC funds would be provided to subsidize the planning and design of the rental housing tower, including related portions of the building base, and interior fit out of the affordable housing units.
The residential rental component of the project will include affordable housing. HDC will administer the Mixed Income Program to ensure that the development will meet the following affordability targets. Of the total 163 units in the residential rental component, 85 will be market rate units, 44 will be middle-income units serving households below 175% AMI, 33 will be low-income units serving households at or below 50% AMI, and one will be a superintendent unit.
LMDC allocated $6 million for the rehabilitation of Masaryk Towers, a 1,110-unit Mitchell-Lama development located on Columbia Street on the Lower East Side. This cooperative development primarily consists of low-income tenants, where more than half of the shareholders qualify for Section 8 vouchers. Moreover, based upon an analysis performed in 2000, 45% of the households earned below 50% AMI and 65% of the families earned below 80% AMI.
Masaryk Towers was built in the 1960’s and many of its systems have outlived their useful life, potentially warranting a significant rent increase. The much needed repairs include, but are not limited to, underground water system repair, façade repair, terrace and original window replacement, subsurface issues, electrical work, and repairs necessary to bring the development into compliance with New York City Local Laws.
Knickerbocker Village is a 1,584-unit development built in 1934, which consists primarily of low and moderate income tenants. Located on the Lower East Side, Knickerbocker Village is operated by a Limited Dividend Housing Company (Housing Company) under Article IV of the New York State Private Housing Finance Law (Article IV), and supervised by the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR). The LMDC allocated up to $5 million for necessary capital improvements at Knickerbocker Village. These funds would serve to benefit the primarily low and moderate income residents by providing for necessary capital improvements that would otherwise be paid from tenants’ rents. Such improvements would include exterior and interior building repairs, and system-wide repair or replacement of mechanical systems, electrical work, and elevators.
To mitigate related rent increases, LMDC funds would be used for capital repairs and improvements, including, but not limited to, those identified in the Physical Condition Survey and other necessary improvements. The Housing Company may be required to make the repairs identified in the Physical Condition Survey at its own cost, as is required by DHCR regulations. LMDC funds would not be used for repairs required to be paid for at the Housing Company’s own cost, but rather necessary capital improvements, which would otherwise be paid from tenants’ rents.