Friday, January 13, 2017


City land in three boroughs to become 100 percent affordable housing M/WBE projects; developments include space for a local farm, leadership academy, LGBT community center, tech incubator

   Mayor Bill de Blasio, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives Richard Buery and Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Vicki Been today announced the selection of eight Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprise teams to lead the construction of six new 100 percent affordable housing developments on vacant City-owned land. The developments will include about 440 homes for seniors and other New Yorkers with a variety of income levels, including extremely-low income and formerly homeless households.

The sites are located in the Bronx’s Melrose and Crotona Park East sections, Brooklyn’s East New York and Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhoods, and Central Harlem.

“These Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprise firms are offering first-rate projects that will serve a diverse set of New York communities and New Yorkers. I congratulate them, and expect to see important work from each of them as we continue to work together in the future to protect affordability and quality of life in all our neighborhoods,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio.

"Just shortly after announcing a 25-year high of affordable housing stock in New York City, we're enlisting the talent of Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses to continue building the equitable, affordable city we envision – a city that works with everyone and for everyone," said Richard Buery, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives and Citywide M/WBE Director. “These skilled entrepreneurs will create new homes for more than 400 families while putting us well on track to fulfill the Administration's bold commitment to increase contracting opportunities for M/WBES."

Aimed at increasing contracting opportunities for M/WBE firms in City housing and economic development projects, HPD issued a Request for Qualifications to create a pre-qualified list of M/WBE developers. The development of these properties was specifically restricted to respondents from that list through a Request for Proposals. In addition to hundreds of homes, these developments will incorporate community space for a green market, a high school capacity building program for STEM students, a tech center and an LGBT community center.

With the creation of the Mayor’s Office of M/WBE’s, the City made a commitment to award at least 30 percent of the value of City contracts to M/WBE’s by 2021 and to double the number of certified M/WBE firms by 2019. The new office is working toward these goals by helping City agencies build and improve their M/WBE programs, increasing access to capital for M/WBEs, capping interest rates at 3 percent on City-financed loans, providing resources for additional capacity-building and technical assistance programs, and streamlining the M/WBE certification process.

A series of initiatives specifically to increase the role of M/WBEs in City housing and economic development projects includes the establishment of a $10 million predevelopment loan fund to help emerging firms secure financing to purchase land and get projects underway, and an additional $10 million fund to help those firms secure the bonds they need in order to qualify for City business.

Winning proposals in Brooklyn:

1921 Atlantic Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant will be developed by a team of M/WBE firms, Dabar Development Partners, LLC and Thorobird. The 25,762 square-foot site will be transformed into a mixed-use project with 183 affordable homes for seniors, and low- and moderate-income households. The project will feature a community facility operated by Oko Farms and NHS. A new fresh food grocery store will be created.

1510-1524 Broadway in Bedford-Stuyvesant will be developed by MacQuesten Construction Management. Partnering with the not-for-profit East Brooklyn Housing Development Corporation, the M/WBE will create 59 affordable homes for extremely-low income individuals on the 20,059 square-foot parcel.

461 Alabama Avenue in East New York will be developed by CB Emmanuel Realty. In partnership with the non-for-profit Services for Underserved, the M/WBE firm will transform the 10,000 square-foot lot into a supportive housing development, with 55 homes for formerly homeless and low-income households. The nonprofit will provide onsite supportive services for the homeless. The building will feature a recreation room, a landscaped yard and roof for resident use.

Winning proposals in the Bronx:

1490 Southern Boulevard Crotona Park East will be developed by Type A Real Estate Advisors, LLC, into a 95-unit senior housing development, affordable to senior households with incomes between $25,400 and $38,100. Working with the LGBT Network and the Jewish Association Serving the Aging, the project will offer support services for senior residents and a community space with programing for the LGBT community of all ages.

359 East 157th Street in Melrose will be developed by Infinite Horizons, LLC. With MBD Community Housing Corp., the M/WBE firm will build 20 affordable homes on the 4,700 square-foot parcel. The homes will be affordable to individuals with incomes between $50,750 and $63,500, and families with incomes between $65,250 and $81,600. The development will feature a green roof and solar panels.

Winning proposal in Manhattan:

263-267 West 126thStreet in Harlem will be developed by M/WBE firms Lemor Realty Corporation and Apex Building Group. The companies will build a passive-house development with 29 affordable homes on the 8,492 square-foot property. The project will house a restaurant and space for the tech incubator company Silicon Harlem, which offers the Apps Youth Leadership Academy, a seven-week course for high school students focused STEM education and enrichment.

“This is the first group of developers to take advantage of the City’s expanded resources for M/WBEs through our new innovative initiative, and to come out of our training programs with actual contracts for affordable housing projects,” said Jonnel Doris, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises. “We couldn’t be more thrilled to do business with these entrepreneurs. It’s a big day for the City, making clear that an investment in M/WBEs is a benefit to all New Yorkers.”

“This administration is deeply committed to expanding the pool of developers helping us create and preserve affordable housing,” HPD Commissioner Vicki Been said. “The six M/WBE teams selected to develop these City-owned sites reflect the diversity of our great city and its neighborhoods. The winning developments will create 440 affordable apartments, including supportive housing, senior housing, and housing for the homeless in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Manhattan. I want to congratulate CB Emmanuel Realty, Dabar Development Partners, MacQuesten Construction Management, Infinite Horizons, LLC, Type A Real Estate, and Lemor Realty and Apex Building Group on their designation and their partnership in developing quality affordable housing that will strengthen our neighborhoods.”

Housing Development Corporation President Eric Enderlin said, “HDC applauds HPD’s selection of M/WBE firms to develop six vacant City-owned sites into dynamic mixed-use affordable housing complexes. HDC is proud to support initiatives that increase opportunities for M/WBEs in the City’s affordable housing efforts. These latest designations will further strengthen the capacity of M/WBEs and diversify the affordable housing industry – key goals of the Mayor’s Housing New York plan.”

“Mayor de Blasio has made a historic commitment to Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprises and our Department is proud to support this work. Under the Mayor’s leadership, our Department has helped the City reach a new all-time high of 4,500 M/WBE firms certified to contract with the City and our goal is to double this figure by 2019,” said Gregg Bishop, Commissioner of the NYC Department of Small Business Services. “City contractors should reflect the rich talents and diversity of our people and the firms hired today for these six affordable housing developments reflect the City’s ongoing commitment to this principle.”

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