City’s affordable housing plan ahead of schedule

City’s affordable housing plan ahead of schedule
Mayor de Blasio takes part in a groundbreaking for affordable housing in the Rockaways earlier this year, in which his administration secured the most housing since 1989.
Courtesy of Mayor’s Office/Ed Reed
By Bill Parry

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Tuesday his administration secured 23,284 affordable apartments and homes during 2016, the second highest number in city history and the most since Ed Koch was mayor in 1989. His Housing New York Plan is now ahead of schedule , with 52, 936 affordable homes financed so far, enough for 130,000 New Yorkers.

Affordable housing for the very poorest New Yorkers—those earning less than $24,000 per year—surged with 3,500 new apartments and more than 4,000 homes for low-income seniors now underway.

“The biggest and most progressive affordable housing plan in the nation is on budget and ahead of schedule,” de Blasio said. “Financing enough affordable housing for 130,000 people in just 2½ years is an extraordinary accomplishment. Just like getting 70,000 kids into Pre-K for All or putting an IDNYC in the hands of more than 800,000 New Yorkers, this is a significant milestone in our effort to make this city fairer and more affordable for everyone.”

One-quarter of all housing financed since 2014 will reach New Yorkers making less than $31,000 for an individual or $40,800 for a family of three and of these homes, 50 percent are for New Yorkers making less than $19,050, or $24,500 for a family of three, officials said.

“We ramped up from day one to meet the goals of Housing New York, and we are now seeing the results of those efforts,” Department of Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Vicki Been said. “This is borne out not just in the numbers, but in the people we are reaching through the affordable housing we build and preserve.”

To meet the goals of Housing New York, de Blasio doubled the capital funding for HPD, and, most recently in the 10-year capital plan, included nearly $7.5 billion for affordable housing and more than $1 billion in funding for the parks, libraries, road construction and other infrastructure necessary to support neighborhood growth and new housing opportunities, according to the administration.

“The Department of City Planning is working with communities, our sister agencies and elected officials to identify opportunities for affordable housing in applications both public and private,” City Planning Commission Chairman Carl Weisbrod said. “This year’s numbers prove that the focus on affordable housing is bearing fruit. As we move forward, tools such as MIH and ZQA will help foster economically diverse neighborhoods and house a wider range of New Yorkers. Neighborhood planning initiatives will increase capacity and ensure future housing opportunities and create thriving neighborhoods with investments to support growth. Working together, we are creating a more equitable New York with affordable housing for residents at all income levels.”

New Yorkers can apply for affordable housing at nyc.gov/housingconnect or by calling 311.

Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparry@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4538.

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