Mayor de Blasio intends to lease unused land at public housing projects to private developers to build towers with 50-50 market rate and subsidized rentals, he announced Tuesday. Van Dyke and Ingersoll Houses as well as one complex in the Bronx will be the first in the project, which aims to raise $200,000,000 in fees from developers over 10 years as well as create 10,000 affordable units, The New York Times reported.
The money will go toward maintaining existing NYCHA housing, to make up for losing more than $1 billion in federal subsidies since 2001. Separately, an advocacy group for the elderly today recommended in a report that 39 parking lots at low-income senior housing be transformed into housing for seniors, The Wall Street Journal reported.
The list includes lots at St. Thomas Episcopal Senior Citizen Housing at 1405 Bushwick Avenue and Jennings Hall Senior Housing at 75 Bushwick Avenue, both in Bushwick. (The lot at the former is tiny, about the size of a row house lot, and privately owned by the church.)
When de Blasio was public advocate, he opposed a similar plan under Bloomberg to build 80/20 housing on NYCHA land. Under the new 50/50 plan, the subsidized units would be aimed at renters making no more than 60 percent of the area median income.
The Ingersoll Houses are located in Fort Greene along Myrtle Avenue. The Van Dyke Houses are at 370 Blake Avenue in Brownsville.
The plan is a novel way to generate money for the city, and to find land on which to build. Considering the luxury developments across the street from Ingersoll Houses from grocery mogul John Catsimatidis’ Red Apple Group, the idea of renters paying market rate rents to live on public housing property does not seem that farfetched. The project will bring thousands of new rentals units to Brooklyn.
What do you think of the plan?