Governor Announces Completion of 160 Affordable and Supportive Units in Brownsville

Ribbon cutting at Vital Brookdale in Brownsville. Image Credit: Office of Governor Kathy Hochul.

The new development is part of an initiative to bring 4,000 affordable units to Central Brooklyn. On November 30, 2022, Governor Kathy Hochul announced the completion of a new affordable and supportive development in Brownsville, Brooklyn. The development, called Vital Brookdale, is located at 535 East 98th Street.

The new seven-story building has 160 units, with 36 units of supportive housing. Ten apartments are for youth aging out of foster care, and 26 apartments will be for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities. The building has 32 studios, 63 one-bedroom, 59 two-bedroom and six three-bedroom units. Most units will be offered at 60 percent area median income (AMI), but 26 units will be at 80 percent AMI. Supportive services will be provided by The New York Foundling in conjunction with relevant state agencies. 

The building has a second-floor terrace and landscaped front and rear courtyards. The development also has a dog run, playground, seating areas and passive recreation space, a multi-purpose common room, game room, library/co-working space, laundry room, fitness room, and bicycle and package storage. The building also has free wireless internet access. 

The building will also have 25,000 square feet of health-focused community space that will be used for a medical clinic operated by Brookdale Hospital, a community job training program, and a community fresh food program. Office space will also be provided for The New York Foundling. 

The building’s development team includes MDG Design + Construction, Smith & Henzy Affordable Group and The New York Foundling. The development is pursuing Passive House US (PHIUS) + 2015 certification, and the building features a 100kW solar photovoltaic system on the roof, LED lighting, low-flow water fixtures, and other energy efficient features. 

The project was funded with state financing including $13.9 million in permanent tax-exempt bonds, federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, and a $30.4 million subsidy from New York State Homes and Community Renewal. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s Multifamily New Construction Program will provide $300,000 in support and over $161,000 in NY Sun incentives. 

The development is a part of the state’s Vital Brooklyn Initiative, a $1.4 billion investment to create 4,000 units of affordable housing and address social, economic and health disparities. The initiative was launched in spring 2017. The 4,000 units will be spread over ten affordable housing developments. Vital Brookdale was the first development to be completed. 

Governor Hochul stated, “Central Brooklyn’s critical health and housing needs have gone unmet for far too long, but in response we are approaching them with bold and innovative solutions. hanks to the Vital Brooklyn Initiative, we are working closely with local partners to create more housing, improve access to health care, and provide the types of supportive services that residents need to thrive. Vital Brookdale is the latest example of my administration’s commitment to boosting the supply of quality of affordable homes for all New Yorkers.”

U.S. House Representative Yvette D. Clarke stated, “Ensuring every New Yorker and their families have safe, warm spaces to call their own is more than our duty as public servants, but our humanitarian and moral obligation – one that has for far too long been neglected to the detriment of countless lives. Thankfully, recent years are changing that critical tide. The Vital Brookdale development represents the first piece in a series of efforts that will not only bring homes to our most vulnerable Brooklynites, but revitalize the communities they belong to. The only way to overcome the many long-standing inequities afflicting our state is to put in the necessary groundwork, and I am ecstatic to see Governor Hochul and her administration’s commitment towards doing just that.”

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

Governor: Governor Hochul Announces Completion of $82 Million Affordable and Supportive Housing Development in Brownsville (November 30, 2022).




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