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New York City ‘locks in’ over 30,000 affordable housing units amid pandemic

Photo via Getty Images

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Wednesday that the city has financed over 30,000 affordable homes during fiscal year 2020 as part of his plan to build or preserve 300,000 affordable homes by 2026. 

Of those homes, 23,520 were preserved and 6,503 are newly constructed units. More than 50% of the homes financed house families making less than $52,000 a year, according to the mayor’s office. 

“The pandemic has made us see even more clearly what housing means for communities, public health and the future of New York City. The city’s recovery depends on our ability to keep people in their homes and stretch our dollars further to build and preserve even more affordable housing in these challenging times,” said Deputy Mayor Vicki Been.

Some properties financed this year include the Bishop Valero Residence which will bring 100 “deeply” affordable homes from seniors including homes for homeless seniors to Astoria, Queens, according to a statement from City Hall. The project was developed by Catholic Charities Progress of Peoples Development Corporation on the underused parking lot of an existing HUD-funded affordable senior project. The project will include a 200-seat capacity community senior center and offer supportive services to residents, the statement adds. 

Rents for all units in the residence will be subsidized through a federal voucher awarded to development. The tax credit allocation for the senior project was increased to ensure construction began on schedule.

Another is Co-op City, the world’s largest housing cooperative located in the Bronx. Over 15,000 homes in the development will remain affordable for the next 40 years due to the City’s preservation programs and tax exemptions, according to a statement from the mayor’s office. 

“New Yorkers will rely on safe, affordable housing more than ever as we continue our fight against COVID-19,” said de Blasio in a statement.  “Our efforts to finance and preserve affordable options for low-income New Yorkers will help our most vulnerable neighbors remain stable and healthy in the months to come – and help us emerge from this crisis a fairer, better city.”

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