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Showing Posts by Category: Openings

Webster Residence Brings More Supportive Housing to the Bronx

06.01.2018

State and city officials, partners and friends gathered on May 11 to celebrate the opening of Webster Residence, an eight story supportive housing building in the Bronx. The Webster Residence features 170 studio apartments, which will be home to low-income and formerly homeless disabled individuals.

Brenda Rosen, President and CEO of Breaking Ground, kicked off the ceremony thanking the project’s partners and remarking that she is delighted to be opening the organization’s fourth supportive/affordable development in the Bronx noting, “Bronx holds a special place in my heart as this is where I spent my early years. I’m thrilled to be part of its revitalization,” Brenda added.

Brenda was joined by RuthAnne Visnauskas, Commissioner/CEO, NYS Homes and Community Renewal; Samuel Roberts, Commissioner NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA); Caren Abate, Housing Director at NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH); Emily Lehman, Assistant Commissioner at NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), alongside Fabian Ramirez from Capital One, Sam Ganeshan from Hudson Housing Capital and Tony Hannigan, CEO of CUCS.

RuthAnne Visnauskas spoke about the transformative impact of housing on the lives of the tenants. She also emphasized the importance of government partnerships and the role of elected officials in making projects like the Webster Residence possible.

“It is a good day when Commissioner Roberts and I are together, it means that more supportive housing is being built across the state. I also want to thank our elected officials. It is extremely valuable for us to have their support on affordable and support projects like this one,” she remarked.

Caren Abate from NYS OMH congratulated Breaking Ground on the opening and spoke about the importance of quality housing for those suffering from mental illnesses. 

“Safe and stable housing gives individuals who are recovering from mental illness a safety net. It offers them the opportunity to focus on their health and future goals without having to worry about where they are going to put their head at night,” she said.  

Funding for this project was provided by NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), NYS Homes and Community Renewal (HCR), NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA), Hudson Housing Capital and Capital One Bank. Breaking Ground acquired the site in 2014 with a bridge loan from the New York City Acquisition Fund and the Low-Income Investment Fund.

The building features a multipurpose room for tenant and community events, a computer lab, fitness room, bike storage, and a beautifully landscaped courtyard that connects Webster to its companion building, the 248 unit Park House. Comprehensive social services will be funded by the NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH). The building was designed by COOKFOX Architect and Mega Contracting Group was the contractor for the project.

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Unique People Services Cuts Ribbon on its First Supportive Housing Development

05.18.2018

Friends, champions and elected officials gathered on Friday May 11 to celebrate the opening of Lynn’s Place, the first supportive and affordable housing building developed by Unique People Services (UPS) in the south Bronx. Named after UPS’ founder Lynn Wonsang, the six-story complex consists of 69 units, 42 of which are supportive housing.

"Looking in front of me, I see the fruit of nearly three decades of dreaming. Dreaming that grew into a clear vision with amazing champions---- and we’d like to say thank you for your passion for our vision in making Lynn’s Place a reality," remarked Yvette B. Andre, the Executive Director of UPS at the opening ceremony.

Yvette B. Andre was joined by Ann Sullivan, Commissioner of NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH); Melissa Mark-Viverito, former NYC City Council Speaker; Assembly Member Michael Blake, NYC HPD Assistant Commissioner Emily Lehman, Hudson Housing Capital’s Sam Ganeshan; Corporation for Supportive Housing’s Kristin Miller, as well as representatives from State Senator Gustavo Rivera and City Council Members Diana Ayala and Rafael Salamanca Jr.

“Over 50% of units are dedicated to people with serious mental illnesses. This opens up their dreams,” said Commissioner Sullivan.

Melissa Mark-Viverto, who represented the neighborhood when the project broke ground, congratulated all the partners and spoke about the importance of investing tax dollars in housing for those in need.

“It is projects like this that give you faith that government is here to serve the most vulnerable. Proud that as speaker of the City Council we invested in such a worthy project,” she said.

Two of Lynn’s Place residents, Ms. Ivory and Mr. Digilio also spoke at the ceremony, expressing their gratitude for having Lynn’s Place as their new home.

“It is really hard to be homeless, especially when you’re older. I’m just really grateful to be in a place where people can see me as a person - not as someone with an illness, but just as me,” shared Ms. Ivory.

The building features a community room, a large sunken courtyard for recreational use, and a beautifully landscaped rooftop. Comprehensive on-site social services are funded by NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH).

This project was funded through the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), the Community Preservation Corporation (CPC), CSH, Hudson Housing Capital, Capital One Bank, Deutsche Bank, New York City Council and NYSERDA.

The building is designed by Urban Architectural Initiatives and Procida Construction Corporation was the contractor for the project.  Robert Sanborn Development was the developer.

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DePaul Celebrates Opening of Packet Boat Landing Apartments in Lockport

05.11.2018

DePaul celebrated the opening of its brand new affordable/supportive housing development, Packet Boat Landing Apartments on Thursday, May 3, 2018 in Lockport, New York.

The three-story, 21,500 square-foot apartment building is named after a type of small cargo and passenger ship called ‘packet boats’ that were used on the Erie and Barge Canals during the 18th and 19th centuries. The building offers 60 one-bedroom units, 21 of which are reserved for supportive housing tenants.

DePaul President Mark Fuller was joined by NYS Senator Robert Ortt, NYS Assembly Member Michael Norris, NYS Home and Community Renewal (HCR) Commissioner and CEO RuthAnne Visnauskas; Lockport Mayor Anne McCaffrey; as well as dignitaries representing NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH), Niagara County’s Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, and Region’s Bank. 

"Packet Boat Landing delivers the mix of affordability and supportive services that are essential in our fight against homelessness, and our ability to ensure that all New Yorkers can access the opportunity created by our growing economy. Under Governor Cuomo's leadership, we are creating and preserving integrated, safe and affordable homes in communities just like Lockport that help strengthen local economies," said New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas at the opening ceremony.

DePaul President Mark Fuller thanked all the partners that helped fund and support this project, and expressed his love for the building.

"We've built about 60 different buildings and this is one of my all- time favorites," he said. 

Senator Ortt noted the importance of supportive housing for helping veterans and others coping with disabilities while Mayor McCaffrey commended DePaul for providing new low-income housing in the city.

Packet Boat Apartments features a spacious community room, lounges throughout the complex and a computer lab. It also offers exercise equipment as well as outdoor seating. Comprehensive on-site tenant support services are funded by the Office of Mental Health.

The Packet Boat Landing Apartments received funding through NYS Housing Financing Agency tax-exempt bonds. Subsidies were provided by NYS HCR in addition to Low Income Housing Tax Credits, OMH loans and grants, and a grant from New York State Energy Research and Development Agency (NYSERDA). The building was designed by SWBR Architects and Calamar was the contractor for the project.

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CAMBA Gardens II Brings 300 Units of Affordable and Supportive housing to Brooklyn

04.26.2018

City, state and private sector partners gathered on a beautiful April afternoon for the ribbon cutting of CAMBA Gardens II, a LEED Gold, 238 unit permanent, affordable and supportive housing development in the East Flatbush/Wingate neighborhood of Brooklyn. The project is built on the NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County campus in what is an exemplary partnership between a public hospital, a nonprofit community developer and community stakeholders.

“Projects like these are about our shared goals. We do this so families are not making choices between food and housing, and are able to get the health care they need,” said Ruth Anne Visnauskas, Commissioner/CEO of NYS Homes and Community Renewal.

CAMBA Inc. CEO, Joanne M. Oplustil welcomed the audience and introduced all the speakers for the program that included Commissioner Samuel D. Roberts from the NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA); Dr. Dave Chokshi, Vice President and Chief population officer at the NYC Health + Hospitals; Council Member Dr. Mathieu Eugene; Deborah DeSantis, CEO of the Corporation for Supportive Housing; Victoria Rowe-Barreca from Enterprise Community Partners.; Matthew Schatz from TD Bank; Maurice Coleman from Bank of America Merrill Lynch; and Daniel J Randall from Federal Home Loan Bank of New York.

“This gathering is a testament to the efforts of all of us. When we work together there’s nothing we cannot do,” remarked Council Member Eugene.

Dr. Dave Chokshi spoke to the importance of supportive housing in providing health care to the most vulnerable New Yorkers.

“As a primary care physician, I know that housing is medicine. Supportive housing provides the stability that people need to be able to live their healthiest,” he said.

The star of the show though was Clarissa Martin, one of the supportive housing tenants who brought the crowd to tears with her story of finding her way out of homelessness to living in CAMBA Gardens II.

“Coming out of the shelter system, I wasn’t fed spiritually, mentally, or medically. They had me in a shared apartment with two active addicts…and I am in recovery,” she told the audience. “Being here is like a bridge back to my life. That’s what it is for me.” she added.

CAMBA Inc.'s on-site staff works with all residents to develop customized service plans for independent living skills training, financial literacy, job readiness, substance abuse, and group social, cultural, and sporting events. Other services such as case management, supportive counseling, coordination of health care and education, nutrition and fitness classes, recreational/family activities, and computer training are also available to all tenants and are funded by the New York State Office of Mental Health, New York City Human Resources Administration, HIV/AIDS Services Administration, and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

The project came together through a mix of private and public funding provided by NYS Division of Housing and Community Renewal, NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development, NYS Homeless Housing Assistance Corporation, New York City Council Member Dr. Mathieu Eugene, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, TD Bank, the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York and the New York State Research and Development Authority.  

CAMBA Gardens II was designed by Dattner Architects and the contractor was Bruno Frustaci Contracting, Inc.

In the News: CAMBA Debuts $100M Brooklyn Affordable Housing

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DePaul Opens Beautiful Joseph L. Allen Apartments in Schenectady

11.21.2017

Celebrating the opening of Joseph L. Allen Apartments with  Joseph L. Allen’s daughter Lakeia Allen-Bowman; his grandson, Raymond Joseph Allen-Bowman; Schenectady Community Action Program Executive Director Debra Schimpf; Schenectady City Councilwoman Marion Porterfield;  Vice Chair of the County Legislature Karen Johnson; Associate Commissioner for the Adult Community Care Group within the Division of Adult Services at the New York State Office of Mental Health Moira Tashjian; Senator James Tedisco; New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas;  DePaul President Mark Fuller; and Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara.

The opening of DePaul’s Joseph L. Allen Apartments October 5th was an especially heart-warming event: in addition to local and state luminaries, the family of Mr. Allen, Schenectady’s first African-American councilman, was on hand. “He would be proud,” said his daughter Lakeia Allen Bowman of having the beautiful new Hamilton Hill residence named after him.  “He would be humbled, and he would shed a few tears.”

Lakeia’s young son Raymond added: “Every time I pass the building, it reminds me of how great my grandpa was.”

The striking apartments - with gray and orange exterior accents - will provide homes to 51 families and individuals, with half the apartments set-aside for families and individuals struggling with mental illness and the other half providing homes to low-income families and individuals from the community.

Services are provided by Schenectady Community Action Program and funded by the Office of Mental Health (OMH). Onsite services include linkage to medical, clinical, vocational, educational, and recreational services

The environmentally-friendly apartment complex features a  large community room with a full kitchen, a computer lab, a landscaped back garden, and free Wi-Fi. Throughout the building hang photos of local landmarks including City Hall, Veterans’ Park and Jerry Burrell Park.

Welcoming those assembled, DePaul President Mark Fuller said “We are so proud to be part of the revitalization of the Hamilton Hill neighborhood community and to provide homes for people in need.”

State Senator Jim Tedisco and County Legislator Karen Johnson, who served on the City Council with Allen, remarked that the development is a fitting tribute to Councilmember Allen who worked so hard to represent the people of Hamilton Hill.

HCR Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas told participants, “This nearly $18 million development enhances the lives of 51 households, strengthens the neighborhood and advances Schenectady’s vibrant revitalization drive.”

Other dignitaries at the event included  Assemblyman Phil Steck, Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara, City Councilwoman Marion Porterfield,  and OMH’s Moira Tashjian.
 
Funding for the Joseph L. Allen Apartments came from NYS Housing Finance Agency, NYS Homes and Community Renewal, NYS Office of Mental Health, JPMorgan Chase, and the Housing Trust Fund Corporation acting by and through the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery (GOSR). The syndicator was Red Stone Equity Partners, LLC. The architect was SWBR Architects and the contractor was Christa Construction.

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FIRST NYC ESSHI-FUNDED PROJECT OPENS ON STATEN ISLAND!!!

10.24.2017


Cutting the ribbon at 411 Vanderbilt.

On an unseasonably warm sunny morning in late October, some fifty friends, staff, partners and well-wishers gathered in the front yard of 411 Vanderbilt to celebrate the long-awaited opening of Project Hospitality’s (PH) first single site supportive housing residence in its 35 year history of serving homeless people on Staten Island. The project was also the first New York City project funded through the state’s Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative (and only the second supportive housing residence to open on Staten Island). Both Project Hospitality’s first Executive Director -- now CEO – Rev. Terry Troia and its new Executive Director Carrie Bloss were on hand to do the honors, as they helped cut the ribbon on 16 beautiful new apartments for formerly homeless individuals.

Project Hospitality Board Chair Rabbi Gerald Sussman told the story of the organization’s twenty five year effort to build 411 Vanderbilt, which included multiple owners reluctant to sell, a long stretch in which the building was inhabited by squatters, and a fire that pretty much destroyed the building. Through the vision and tenacity of Project Hospitality and the project’s architect Amie Gross, its contractor Mammoth Construction, as well as important funders, 411 Vanderbilt literally rose from the ashes.

Kimberly Smith of the Office for Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) was not the first or last speaker to acknowledge the difficulties in developing this project. Ms. Smith and OTDA’s Dana Greenberg presented Project Hospitality with a certificate of recognition from Commissioner Roberts as well as greetings from the Governor.  Project Hospitality, for their part, gave out plaqued bricks to significant project partners including CSH, Capital One Richmond County Savings Foundation and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

CSH’s Kristin Miller – whose organization had loaned PH the money to acquire the property -- noted that it had taken 25 years to make a loan for supportive housing on Staten Island, and predicted the next loan would not take as long.

Capital One’s Heather Gershen pointed out that it “takes a village” not just to support our most vulnerable neighbors, but to support the groups that support them as well.

Arthur McCarthy of Mammoth Construction told listeners that he never forgot where he came from – a modest upbringing -- and that his “heart goes out to people who haven’t been as lucky.” He then proceeded to offer a check for $2,500 in his recently passed father’s name to be used to fill the refrigerators of the 16 people who would be moving into 411 Vanderbilt over the next few days.

Also on hand were representatives from Richmond County Savings Foundation, HUD, OASAS, the Staten Island Foundation, the Network and HSU.

411 Vanderbilt was funded by HUD, OTDA, CSH, Deutsche Bank, Capital One and the aforementioned foundations. Service funding will come from the NYS Department of Health. 

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Beautiful Renaissance Village Opens in Middle Island, NY

10.24.2017


Beautiful Renaissance Village in Middle Island, NY. Photo credit: Kimathi Witt (2017 Tenant of the Year).

On October 16th,  a beautiful, autumn day, Concern for Independent Living celebrated the opening of Renaissance Village, a 123-unit mixed-income supportive housing development in Middle Island, Suffolk County. Renaissance Village provides 50 units for homeless adults with mental health challenges who are high Medicaid users, 72 units for low-income individuals and families, and one superintendent unit.

After a warm welcome from Concern’s Executive Director and Network Board Treasurer Ralph Fasano, Gail Lynch-Bailey, President of the Middle Island Civic Association, spoke movingly about how Renaissance Village is “not only a rebirth for all the people who are starting new lives, but for those of us who have been here a long time, and awaiting a rebirth for our community.”

NYS Homes & Community Renewal (HCR) Assistant Commissioner Sean Fitzgerald was honored by Concern at the opening for the integral part he’s played in making Concern’s many supportive and affordable housing projects a success.

Other dignitaries who spoke at the opening included Commissioner Ann Marie T. Sullivan of NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH) who said “what is really successful is when individuals who are living with mental illness have the opportunity to become part of the community that will help them traverse that road of hope and recovery and that’s what you’re doing here;” Commissioner Samuel Roberts of NYS Office of Temporary & Disability Assistance (OTDA); Steven Bellone, Suffolk County Executive; Supervisor Edward P. Romaine, Town of Brookhaven; Sarah Anker, Legislator, Suffolk County; Councilman Michael Loguercio, Town of Brookhaven; Brian Loeb of Federal Home Loan Bank of New York; and Maurice Coleman of Bank of America.

Formerly underutilized land in the heart of Middle Island, Renaissance Village now features nine townhouse-style buildings; a community center with exercise room, a computer room, and ample outdoor space for residents to enjoy.

Funding for Renaissance Village was provided by HCR, OMH, Bank of America, County of Suffolk, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, and Astoria Bank.

The development team included the law firms of Russo, Karl, Widmaier & Cordano, and Nixon Peabody, the project’s attorneys; Belfor Long Island, the general contractor; DeLaCour, Ferrara & Church, the project architect; and Betts Housing Consultants. 

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Concern Bergen Opens in Brooklyn

07.10.2017


Cutting the Ribbon at Concern Bergen.

On June 30th, a beautiful Friday before the Fourth of July holiday weekend, Concern for Independent Living celebrated the opening of a new residence in the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn. The newly constructed 90-unit residence stands on what was formerly a blighted lot. Concern Bergen includes 55 supportive housing units for people living with mental illness, including those who spent time in state psychiatric centers, and 35 low-income, affordable units for both individuals and families.

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The Community Builders Opens a Beautiful New Affordable/Supportive Housing Residence

06.27.2017

Cutting the ribbon at Tapestry on the Hudson.

On June 6th, The Community Builders and Unity House held a ribbon cutting for Tapestry on the Hudson (“Tapestry”), a new affordable and supportive housing residence in Troy.  The residence, a former collar factory, was converted into 67 apartments, including 19 supportive units primarily for families.  Troy is known as the Collar City having been the one-time center of manufacturing for celluloid collars at the turn of the 20th Century. 

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Norwood Terrace Opens

05.23.2017


Cutting the ribbon at Norwood Terrace.

More than 80 partners, staff, tenants and well-wishers gathered May 19th to celebrate the opening of Norwood Terrace, a new affordable/supportive residence developed by B&B Urban and Concern for Independent Living in the Norwood section of the Bronx. The 115-unit residence features a library, a computer lab, and a roof garden in addition to its mix of efficiency, one, two and three bedroom apartments; the building is now home to formerly homeless individuals as well as families and individuals from the community.

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