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Hunters Point South housing project moves to Phase 2

Hunters Point South housing project moves to Phase 2
By Bill Parry

Developer TF Cornerstone has been selected to build Phase 2 of the massive Hunters Points South housing project in Long Island City.

Plans call for two high-rise towers of 41 and 36 stories containing 1,193 apartments.

While 400 units will be market-rate, nearly 800 will be affordable apartments with 100 of the units reserved for low-income senior citizens. The second phase will be the last and largest mixed-income project of the Bloomberg administration, according to city Housing Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas.

“From our most vulnerable populations to those in our middle-class, the challenges of finding an affordable home and the cost of living with rent burden are experiences that many New Yorkers share,” she said.

When all seven phases are complete, Hunters Point South will be the largest affordable housing project since Brooklyn’s Starett City and Co-op City in the Bronx were completed in the early 1970s.

“It will be a place where our senior citizens will have rents they can afford and supportive services, and where hardworking and moderate- and middle-income New York families can put down roots and grow with this vibrant and flourishing neighborhood,” Visauskas said.

TF Cornerstone is no stranger to the LIC waterfront, having built six luxury high rise towers on Center Boulevard in the last decade.

“When we broke ground on our LIC Waterfront project more than 10 years ago, we envisioned the creation of a multifaceted, family-friendly community with diverse retail options, top-of-the-line schools and expansive park space,” TFC President K. Thomas Elghanayan said.

The 700 affordable units for middle-income residents, making anywhere from 105 percent to 155 percent of medium income in the area, is equivalent to a family of four making between $111,670 and $141,735 annually, according to Housing.

With families in mind, 80 of the 1,193 units will be three-bedroom apartments.

State Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) said, “I am pleased that my request for more three-bedroom units in Hunters Point South led to an increase from 66 units in the selected proposal. There remain, however, additional needs that need to be met by the developer as this project moves forward.”

Gianaris mentioned the need for more space for health care, cultural activities and other community services.

TF Cornerstone is teaming with Selfhelp, a nonprofit that serves more than 20,000 seniors in the New York area, which will provide services to the residents, including an on-site senior center.

“We are excited about partnering in this noteworthy venture,” Selfhelp CEO Stuart Kaplan said. “It gives us a great sense of pride to be able to offer home care, technology-based enhancements and other services for the residents of the 100 units of affordable housing for seniors in this state-of-the-art building.”

The first phase of the Hunters Points South project is already 33 percent complete. Developer Related Cos. is expected to solicit applications during the first quarter of 2014. The entire project, when completed, will total 5,000 units.

Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparry@cnglocal.com of by phone at 718-260-4538.

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