East New York Affordable Housing Complex Gateway Elton Wins Award for Excellence

Gateway Hudson East New YorkGateway Elton Phase III

As the East New York community fights against rezoning plans for the area, construction continues on the affordable Gateway Elton complex in the Spring Creek section of East New York — and now the solar-powered complex has won an award for affordable excellence.

The New York State Association for Affordable Housing (NYSAFAH) named Gateway Elton Phase II as the downstate project of the year, according to PoliticoNY. Applications for units opened in December.

The Gateway Elton project also received praise in 2014 when it won the Renewable Energy Project of the Year from the New York Chapter of the Association of Energy Engineers.

Built on former landfill, Phase II will be honored at the NYSAFAH annual gala on November 4 at 6 p.m. at the Yale Club in Manhattan.

Gateway Elton Street AffordableGateway Elton Phase II

Phase II is just one third of an ambitious three-phase project consisting of nine mid-rise buildings with a mix of retail and affordable units. The venture is part of New York City’s Housing Preservation Development’s Fresh Creek Urban Renewal Plan. Once completed, the entire project will encompass 70,000 square feet of ground floor retail space and 659 affordable units.

The award-winning Phase II will add 175 of the plan’s total 659 affordable apartments as well as 24,000 of the total 70,000 square-feet of ground floor commercial space. It is also the largest multifamily solar setup in New York State, making it a leader not just in affordable but also green housing.

The entire development will include over a million watts of solar photovoltaic panels on its collective rooftops. Of this total, Phase II will include 250,000 watts.

Phase II is being co-developed by Hudson Companies and CAMBA Housing Ventures. Brooklyn-based housing affiliate CAMBA is one of the social services providers. Phase II was designed by MHG Architects.

Funds for Phase II’s construction came in part from tax-exempt bonds and second mortgages courtesy of the HDC, HPD Capital Funds, NYSERDA, and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. Additional funding was sourced from State and Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, which supplied the development with nearly $27,000,000.

Intended as a neighborhood center, Gateway Elton includes community and retail facilities such as a supermarket and childcare center.

Phase II of the development includes 197 units reserved for families of varying sizes making no more than $49,800 annually. The development, at 516 and 524 Vandalia Avenue, is across the street from a new school on Flatlands and Elton, and sandwiched between the Gateway Center Mall and the Nehemia homes.

The development’s last leg, Gateway Elton Phase III, will have two mixed-use buildings, both with ground-floor retail, and a total of 287 affordable units, not to mention a fitness center, bike storage and computer room. Receiving $53,850,000 in tax-exempt bonds through the HDC, the heavily subsidized final phase began construction earlier this year.

The New York State Association for Affordable Housing explained their decision making process through the following statement.

Gateway Elton Phase II epitomizes NYSAFAH’s commitment to strengthening communities and providing the safe, quality affordable housing that low-income and vulnerable New Yorkers so desperately need. This cutting-edge development will provide 175 affordable units, the majority of which will serve hardworking East New York families who make up to 40, 50 and 60 percent of AMI. The Hudson Companies also went above and beyond the call of duty by making this a uniquely green and sustainable complex, with common areas powered entirely by rooftop solar panels.

Hudson properties did not return requests for comment.

gateway elton ii renderingGateway Elton Phase II

Gateway Hudson East New YorkGateway Elton Street Phase III

[Source: PoliticoNY | Renderings: via Hudson Companies]

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One Comment

  • Overall this looks like a good project. My only concern is that it is really in an area that is totally lacking in good transit options. Hopefully, there is enough express bus service to make job accessible for the people for whom these apartments are intended.