On Thursday, September 28th, CSD Housing and Federation of Organizations joined project partners and elected and government officials for the opening of a new affordable/supportive housing residence, Herkimer Gardens. Herkimer Gardens brings 121 new affordable apartments, including 60 new units of supportive housing for seniors, to Bedford–Stuyvesant in Brooklyn. On-site services are provided by Federation of Organizations funded by the Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative (ESSHI) through New York State Department of Health (NYS DOH).
Mike Dehmler, Managing Member of CSD Housing, who emceed the event, kicked off the program, “We built this in the middle of a pandemic that hit seniors by far the hardest as well as those with economic hardships. This project is serving both.”
“Herkimer Gardens allows seniors to remain in the community and have the ability to age in place. It is specifically designed to address the needs of local seniors,” said Barbara Faron, Chief Executive Officer of Federation of Organizations. “We aspire to create a safe haven for our residents to call home, where their quality of life takes precedence and where they receive the essential services required to flourish within their community.”
“Brooklyn and New York City are dealing with a real affordable housing crisis and communities of color and seniors are hit hardest,” said Attorney General Letitia James. “People deserve a safe and decent place to rest their head at night and to live out their golden years in comfort and dignity.”
"This is about a community that came together with a vision of what housing means and that housing heals,” said Kathryn Garcia, Director of State Operations of New York State.
“This incredible building is part of Vital Brooklyn Initiatives and reflects the Governor’s commitment to housing, health and mental health,” said New York State Homes and Community Renewal (NYS HCR) Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas. “It is also a part of the State's five-year Housing Plan. As we celebrate we are reminded also of how much we still have to do. The need is great, we have a long way to go, and our promise is to do projects like this in every corner of the State that needs it.”
“This building is gorgeous. Thank you for taking into account the historic look of this neighborhood and the beautiful flow of buildings,” said City Councilmember Chi Ossé. “When we see new developments come in the district, they often don’t take into account what the community wants to see.”
“I’m very lucky to live in a nice studio with a stove. I love to cook and never had the opportunity to before. A year ago, I was in a shelter and had stopped believing in obtaining an apartment.” Kathy, new resident.
LaRay Brown, Chief Executive Officer, One Brooklyn Health, also spoke.
Herkimer Gardens was built on a former Interfaith Medical Center parking lot, which is across the street, and will feature a 5,900 square-foot community space with a healthcare facility operated by Interfaith Medical Center. It will also include a food access assistance center on the first floor. Building amenities include a wellness center, an urban farm, a recreational terrace featuring yoga classes, a community room, free Wi-Fi, laundry facilities and 24/7 front desk staffing. Additionally, the building meets high standards for green design, complying with Enterprise Green Communities Guidelines.
Funding for Herkimer Gardens came from New York State Housing Finance Agency (HFA) 4% Low Income Housing Tax Credits and the Supportive Housing Opportunity Program (SHOP) as well as New York State Homes and Community Renewal (NYS HCR) Housing Trust Fund.
The architect is Urban Architectural Initiatives (UAI) and the general contractor is Mega Contracting Group.