City Planning Approves Application for Supportive and Affordable Housing in East New York

Rendering of 461 Alabama Avenue. Image Credit: NYC CPC

The new building will have 43 apartments for formerly homeless individuals. On January 9, 2019, the City Planning Commission voted unanimously to approve an application for the development of a seven-story residential building at 461 Alabama Avenue in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn. The City Planning Commission held a public hearing for the application on December 5, 2018. The applicant team consisted of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, CB Emmanuel Realty LLC, Services for the Underserved and Newman Design.

The property is currently a city-owned vacant lot. The proposed building will have 70 residential units and one super’s unit.

There will be 43 supportive studio apartments. Supportive housing is designed to provide formerly homeless individuals stable housing with services provided onsite. Services for the underserved will provide services like employment services, life skills training, substance abuse services, and social and recreational activities to supportive residents.

The remaining apartments will all be affordable at 60 percent AMI. There will be twelve studio apartments, thirteen one-bedroom, and two two-bedroom affordable apartments. Rents for these apartments will range from $871 for a studio to $1,332 for a two-bedroom. The affordable apartments will be marketed through HPD Housing Connect.

The building would also include a lounge, a multipurpose room, a laundry room, tenant storage, and a landscaped courtyard.

To facilitate this project, HPD sought an Urban Development Action Area Plan designation, UDAAP project approval, and disposition of city-owned land. The applicants also requested a special permit to increase the maximum FAR from 2.43 up to 4.8 for developments of non-profit institutions with sleeping accommodations.

The application also includes an Urban Renewal Plan Amendment to the East New York I Urban Renewal Plan. The East New York I Urban Renewal Plan was created in 1985 and has been amended three times, most recently in 2013. The plan has brought affordable ownership and rental housing and community facilities to East New York.

On September 26, 2018, Brooklyn Community Board 5 voted to approve the application 25 in favor, none opposed and one abstained.

On November 22, 2018, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams approved of the application with modifications, including memorializing the use of one or more local affordable housing non-profit to act as the administering agent, developing potential tenant outreach strategies, and the inclusion of non-supportive affordable housing at 30, 40 and 50 percent AMI.

At the City Planning Commission public hearing on December 5, 2018, five people spoke in support of the application due to the addition of affordable and supportive housing to the neighborhood the project would bring.

The City Council will begin to review the application in subcommittee and will hold a public hearing at a later date.


By: Veronica Rose (Veronica is the CityLaw Fellow and a New York Law School Graduate, Class of 2018.)



Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.