The new building will be across the street from another affordable housing development recently approved by the City Planning Commission. On May 25, 2022, Governor Kathy Hochul announced the beginning of construction for a new affordable and supportive housing development in the Wakefield section of the Bronx. The Plains will be located at 4519 White Plains Road between East 239th and East 240th Street. The development team consists of the Doe Fund and Robert Sanborn Development.
The Plains will be a nine-story building with 98 affordable units, with 49 of those units reserved for adults experiencing homelessness and living with HIV/AIDS. Another 20 units will be reserved for seniors. All apartments will be affordable at 80 percent area median income or less. Supportive services will be available, administered by the AIDS Institute. The Doe Fund will provide housing and clinical case management services.
Other amenities for tenants include storage, 24/7 security, on-site laundry, a fitness center, outdoor recreation space, and a multi-purpose room. Offices for program staff will also be included.
The building’s design meets the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s Multifamily New Construction Program Tier 2 and LEED for Homes Gold energy efficiency standards. Design features include a green roof and solar photovoltaic array, high-efficiency electric Variable-Rate-Flor HVAC systems, Energy Star LED lighting and appliances, and low-flow plumbing fixtures.
The Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative will fund the supportive services. Overall, the project is expected to cost $49 million. Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits will generate $25 million in equity, and New York State Homes and Community Renewal will provide $9.7 million in subsidy. Through its Homeless Housing Assistance Program, the The New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance will provide $4.9 million. New York State Energy Research and Development will provide $78,800 in support. The Doe Fund obtained private sector construction and permanent loans. The Corporation for Supportive Housing provided a $4 million acquisition loan for pre-development funds.
The Plains will be across the street from another affordable housing development, 4541 Furman Avenue, which was recently approved by the City Planning Commission.
The Plains is another piece of Governor Hochul’s plans to build more affordable housing. In the State Budget, a $25 billion five-year comprehensive housing plan was secured which will increase or preserve 100,000 affordable homes across New York state.
Governor Hochul stated, “Sustained investment in creating and preserving safe, affordable homes for New Yorkers is a cornerstone of my administration. This new development demonstrates our commitment to increasing the supply of quality homes across the Bronx and to keeping our most vulnerable residents active, engaged, and living healthier, more independent lives.”
Council Member Eric Dinowitz stated, “Affordable housing for vulnerable populations, including low-income, formerly homeless people and older adults, needs to come with support systems in place. That is exactly what The Plains is doing, and the wraparound services they will provide ensures that new tenants will not just have a roof over their heads, but all of their needs are met. The housing crisis is affecting New Yorkers all over the city, which is why I am so grateful and encouraged that this development will serve my constituents in Wakefield.”
By: Veronica Rose (Veronica is the CityLaw fellow and a New York Law School graduate, Class of 2018.)