November 19, 2018
Innovative public private partnerships will address nearly $13 billion for critically needed repairs while maintaining rent and rights for 140,000 residents
NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio announced today a commitment from the New York City Housing Authority to bring repairs to 62,000 apartments. These comprehensive upgrades, which will address nearly $13 billion in repairs, will be made possible through public-private partnerships, including the Rental Assistance Demonstration program. All 62,000 apartments will be converted to Section 8 funding and remain permanently affordable. Maintenance and ongoing operations will be provided by quality private managers. The approximately 140,000 residents in these units will retain all their rights as public housing residents, pay rent limited to 30% of their income, and remain in their buildings during the renovations, which will include new kitchens and bathrooms; replacing windows, elevators, boilers and roofs; and improved common areas.
Renovations have already been completed at the 1,395 apartments at Ocean Bay. There are currently nearly 8,900 units in NYCHA’s preservation program in resident engagement, predevelopment, or development for comprehensive capital repairs. All 62,000 units will be completed on a rolling basis by 2028.
“This is a turning point for tens of thousands of NYCHA residents. We have an opportunity to undo decades of neglect and mismanagement, and we have to take it,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “These partnerships are one of our best-proven tools to deliver critical repairs. We look forward to working with officials, residents and advocates on this and other new strategies to make a concrete difference for the 400,000 people who call NYCHA home.”
“We’re proud to be here today as we convert Betances to the Section 8 program, which will enable us to bring significant improvements for the hundreds of families who call Betances home through our PACT program,” said NYCHA Interim Chair and CEO Stanley Brezenoff. “As our properties need $32 billion worth of repairs, a new and radical approach is absolutely necessary to tackle that enormous figure. This is why we are announcing a major expansion of PACT to transform 62,000 NYCHA apartments across the City by 2028, benefitting approximately 142,000 New Yorkers – more than a third of our residents – with nearly $13 billion of renovations and major repairs to their homes. With the support of Mayor de Blasio, who knows the vital role of public housing in New York City, PACT is the way of the future for NYCHA, as we work to improve residents’ quality of life while contending with the harsh reality of declining federal funding.”
“The expansion and acceleration of RAD is a game changer for public housing in NYC. We know from experience that RAD is a reliable, scalable strategy that resolves deferred maintenance while keeping rents affordable - now, we're able to bring these improvements to more than 140,000 NYCHA residents,” said Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen.
“Today’s historic proposal is a positive step toward transforming NYCHA’s aging public housing by maximizing federal funds through private investment to ensure families have a place they can be proud to call home. HUD stands ready to work with the city to advance the largest RAD conversion in the nation and preserve critically needed affordable housing for the residents we serve,” said HUD Regional Administrator Lynne Patton.
The Mayor made today’s announcement at Betances Houses, a 1,088-apartment complex in the Bronx that officially converted to Section 8 through RAD this past Friday. Starting next month, the 2,683 Betances residents will begin seeing comprehensive capital repairs, including new kitchens and bathrooms, new flooring, replacing all boilers with new energy efficient boilers and hot water heaters, upgrading elevator machinery and equipment, and installing a new security system by late 2021.
Betances is NYCHA’s third conversion closing, after Ocean Bay (Bayside) in 2016 and Twin Parks West last month, meaning 7,600 residents are seeing immediate repairs in their homes.
RAD is an innovative tool from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that lets public housing authorities permanently preserve public housing developments as affordable homes and make necessary repairs. In New York City, RAD includes collaboration between the Authority, NYCHA residents, development partners, and community and housing advocates, and it is a key part of NextGeneration NYCHA, the Authority’s long term strategic plan to create financial stability and improve residents’ lives.
NYCHA announced 2,400 new apartments undergoing RAD conversions this past summer, and the RFP is expected to be released for these 21 developments across Manhattan and Brooklyn next month:
New York City is using innovative strategies to generate revenue for repairs in public housing. There are currently nearly 8,900 NYCHA RAD and unfunded apartments in resident engagement, predevelopment, or development for comprehensive capital repairs. These unfunded developments have had no consistent funding stream since the State of New York divested them in 1998. In the NextGeneration NYCHA plan, the City committed to renovating 15,000 apartments through RAD and that the approximately 5,000 unsubsidized apartments receive subsidy by 2025, and today’s announcement expands that to 62,000 apartments in total.
“All residents of New York City, whether in public or private housing, deserve safe, comfortable homes with functioning appliances. I am excited to see this program kick-off, and look forward to seeing all NYCHA and Section 8 apartments at a standard residents are not just comfortable in, but proud of,” said State Senator Roxanne Persaud.
“Residents are long overdue to receive the critical fixes necessary to live in safe and healthy homes. RAD was implemented by President Obama in 2011 to address urgent capital needs through in place renovation,” said Council Member Alicka Ampry-Samuel, chair of the Public Housing Committee. “Having seen renovated RAD apartments, the improvements are immeasurable. Understandably so, the public is weary of RAD because it presents elements of privatization which are often unknown. That said, as chair of the Public Housing Committee and the Council as a body, we must do everything in our power to ensure that tenant’s rights are protected, true affordability is maintained, that there is no displacement and continuously urge the administration to continue to make NYCHA a priority.”
“The Rental Assistance Demonstration is a powerful tool for modernizing and strengthening public housing communities in New York City, while also maintaining long-term affordability and key resident protections,” said Judi Kende, Vice President and New York market leader of Enterprise Community Partners. “Enterprise is proud to serve as co-chair of the RAD Roundtable, comprising advocates and resident leaders who are working with NYCHA to ensure resident rights are preserved as the RAD program expands.”