City Hall’s affordable housing plan on time and under budget

Mayor Bill de Blasio welcomes Matthew and Diane Crencher to their new home as the city has financed the most units of affordable housing since 1989.
Courtesy Mayor’s office
By Bill Parry

The city is making strides in combating the affordable housing crisis.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced last week that his administration secured 24,293 affordable apartments in 2017, the highest overall production since 1989. His 10-year Housing New York plan has financed a total of 77,651 new or preserved affordable homes since January 2014, including the highest three-year streak of affordable housing production in the city’s history.

“Affordability is the key to protecting New York families, stabilizing our neighborhoods and the city as a whole,” de Blasio said. “By making smart investments, we are stretching public funds and creating more and better homes for New Yorkers, from formerly homeless families to seniors, firefighters, police officers and teachers. We have more work to do, but this city is for New Yorkers — and we will keep it that way.”

Of the 24,293 homes financed in the last year, more than 40 percent are for families earning less than $43,000 a year, including 4,014 homes for families of three earning less that $26,000 a year. The Housing New York plan is on budget and ahead of schedule, city officials said.

“We are delivering affordable housing on a scale that hasn’t been seen since the Koch era,” Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Maria Torres-Springer said. “More importantly, we are reaching more of the city’s lowest-income families, making good on our commitment to reach far deeper levels of affordability.”

In Queens, One Flushing, a housing project at 39-01 Main St,, will create 208 new affordable homes for individuals earning as little as $20,040 and $25,770 for a family of three. The project on city-owned land was formerly a parking lot. One Flushing also provides supportive services for 66 seniors and a rooftop farm.

“Quality affordable housing for fixed-income seniors and low-income families is among the top needs in our community, and the One Flushing project is a great example of the city responding to these needs with a range of solutions,” City Councilman Peter Koo (D-Flushing) said. “Coupled with community spaces, support services, and commercial opportunities, One Flushing seeks to provide quality living for everyone who lives, works and visits our community.”

The mayor said the nearly 78,000 apartments built or preserved in the last three years is “enough housing to provide for the entire population of Salt Lake City,” and his Housing New York plan will supply affordable units for a half million people.

“Housing affordability is not only key to growing and protecting our working class, but it is essential to the sustainability and future success of our city,” U.S. Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-Jackson Heights) said. “I’m glad to see the city is working on its commitment to making New York more livable for low-income families and our vulnerable communities, and I’m encouraged by the investments that continue to be made under Housing New York.”

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

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