Mayor’s Plan for Affordable Housing Will Turn East New York Into Bushwick


The ironies of the Mayor’s housing plan are piling up as high as a waterfront luxury skyscraper. Despite the populist rhetoric, the mayor’s plan to build more affordable housing in Brooklyn is a recipe for more development much like Bloomberg’s and will likely accelerate the gentrification of the few low-income neighborhoods still left in Brooklyn, was the conclusion of a deep dive into the subject matter on Gothamist.

Long-time residents of Cypress Hills, East New York, the Atlantic Avenue corridor and other low-income areas targeted by the mayor for rezoning and more affordable housing will not be able to afford these new “affordable” developments, the story concluded.

The mayor’s strategy “will please big developers while offering a sprinkling of housing,” the story quoted Professor of Urban Affairs and Planning at Hunter College and the Graduate Center Tom Angotti as saying. “It’s no different than Bloomberg’s plan to upzone wide areas for high-rise development and then get a little bit of affordable housing to win over the community.”

The income thresholds are way too high for those area’s residents now. “As it’s written, the [citywide] unit percentage breakdown amounts to a median rent of between $1,050 and $1,670, with 8 percent of the 200,000 units for rent at $630,” said Shai Lauros, director of community development for Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation. Affordable rents in Cypress Hills “typically range from $375 to $625, so there is a discrepancy here. This could contribute to displacement,” she said.

A report on the Sustainable Communities Initiative from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development came to a similar conclusion, saying it “has the potential to spur gentrification and displace residents in low- and moderate-income areas.”

Whites are already moving into East New York, and NYU tote bags (gasp!) have been seen in Cypress Hills, said the story. Gothamist spoke to several residents of these areas, each in their own way representative of the changes happening. One was a long-time resident of Cypress Hills who wouldn’t be able to afford the new developments. Another sold his townhouse in Bed Stuy for a million dollars a year ago and moved to East New York. The third was a priced-out renter and artist who moved to a studio with more space for $1,000 a month somewhere near Fulton Street.

What do you think the answer is?

Is East New York The Next Bushwick? [Gothamist]

9 Comment

  • Drawing a “conclusion” from anything on Gothamist isreally pathetic. have tou ever read the nutjobs posting over there????

  • I don’t know if it is a good plan or not, but the question does not exist in a vaccuum. The NYU tote bag in the story, if it signifies anything, signifies that gentrification pressure is following the A, J, M and L trains out past Bed Stuy and Bushwick as recent grads and “the creative class” seeks lower rents. The BdB focus on Broadway Junction and ENY is probably an attempt to harness and perhaps get ahead of that trend and leverage the likely future market demand to create new sub-market housing along with the market housing. The issues are both affordability and housing quantity. If NYC is growing, which it is, the best places to increase density are along major transit corridors. Not increasing density is also a recipe for accelerating gentrification. If one thinks Broadway Junction is a bad place to increase density, the question then is where should more density be allowed instead?

  • isn’t that a picture of northside williamsburg?

  • heard here first.. I said this would gentrify ENY as soon as the plan was announced. I’ve also said Deblasio is a moron from day one.

  • Housing stock wise ENY resembles parts of Northeast Bushwick, Windsor Terrace, PLG, Flatbush or Ridgewood, Even Sunset Park has similar barrel front brick rowhouses. Mentally preparing for the Columbus effect that is soon to come.

  • Eny is not the place it once was. I have lived in eny most of my life. Most people who live in the area are hardworking citizens just trying to make ends meat. Thankfully, east ny does not have an inventory glut much like “Bedstuy” had. We also don’t have grand homes worth millions of dollars (Unless the property value becomes artificially inflated. ) Thankfully most people own most of their homes. As to the Atlantic Avenue Corridor, it does need redevelopment, but why not have developers come in a develop stuff that caters to the need of the community. Why not make apartments in the area affordable for people living within that area. But again, it appears that “Gentrification” is the new racism. Brownsville & East New York appear to be the final frontier for development in Brooklyn. I guess it will be full steam ahead within the next to years. I can only hope that the will of the community will be able to survive the gentrification. I also wonder what happens to all the people like myself who live in east ny work hard and make less then 40k will do?

    • I don’t think it is the responsibility of the city to cater to individuals that assumed that their RENTED property in NYC might one day be worth more money and landlords would take advantage of this. When you rent, you are on the rental market. Does it suck?, yes big time, but you are a RENTER, not an owner. Why is this so hard for people to understand, it is not a difficult concept to understand, the property is not yours. Let’s cut the bologna, you would do the same thing if this was your property and its value went up. If you want stability live in another city, there are plenty of them where the rent has been stagnant and home values don’t fluctuate much. Let me guess, you want to live in THE BIG APPLE and pay peanuts, while everyone else is working hard as hell to make ends meet. We are living in a different US than ten years ago. The recession hit many people hard and these people have a hard time feeling empathy for others trying to game the system.