For Immediate Release: Wednesday, February 28, 2018
Contact: Matthew Creegan, 212-863-7879

 

HPD Announces Development Plans for 56 Affordable Homes for First Time Home Buyers

Habitat for Humanity New York City and Almat Group to develop Sydney House, a 100 percent affordable co-op building in the Bronx, the first project to be financed under HPD’s Open Door Program

 

NEW YORK, NY – New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Maria Torres-Springer announced today development plans for Sydney House in the Williamsbridge section of the Bronx. The 100 percent affordable seven story, 56-unit co-op building is the first affordable housing development to be built under the City’s new Open Door program, which finances the construction of affordable homes for first time buyers.

“Homeownership is a dream for so many working families, and Open Door is staying true to its name and making that dream a reality by breaking down many of the barriers to entry many New Yorkers face. The program’s first development, Sydney House, will create 56 opportunities for people to change their lives and strengthen their communities by owning a piece of their city,” said HPD Commissioner Maria Torres-Springer. “I want to thank Habitat for Humanity, Almat Group and our many development partners for creating homeownership opportunities that will empower our city’s families to be an anchoring force in their neighborhoods.”

"As we talk about affordable housing in New York City, rentals often dominates the conversation but we need more solutions to enable young families to put down roots and build equity," said Council Member Andy King.  "I'm thrilled to support The Open Door Program and the Sydney House project in my district, which creates much needed options for homeownership in our city where we want to keep our young men and women. We don't want New Yorkers priced out of New York and this program attacks this problem head on."

"There is nothing more important to creating a fairer, and more economically equitable city, than helping more people build wealth through buying homes. The Open Door program will be a critical pathway to homeownership for New Yorkers, and today's announcement serves as an important milestone in developing more opportunities for first-time home buyers to find homes they can afford right here in New York City," said Council Member Robert E. Cornegy.

“We have seen time and again the positive, wide-reaching implications that home ownership has for first-time homebuyers, especially those who never dreamed they would have this opportunity,” said Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz. “I commend this partnership for understanding the undeniable connection between home ownership, stability and success for New York’s hardworking families.”

The nonprofit Habitat for Humanity New York City along with Almat Group will lead the development of the 77,000 square-foot project. Development plans for the building include a mix of one, two, and three-bedroom units. Sale prices for the units, which will remain affordable for the next 40 years, will range from $188,823 for a small one bedroom to $326,000 for a three-bedroom, affordable to low-to moderate-income households.

“We have seen affordable homeownership anchor communities by allowing hard-working families the opportunity to build a stable foundation for all other aspects of their lives,” said Karen Haycox, CEO of Habitat for Humanity New York City. “We are thrilled to be working with HPD and our partners at Almat Group to champion this vision through the Open Door program with Sydney House, a big and bold beginning to the initiative to bring more affordable homeownership to New York City. With 56 units under one roof, we are also excited to embark on the largest single structure in Habitat history.”

“This neighborhood of the Bronx holds personal meaning to us, and it has been deeply rewarding to help this community grow and afford more New Yorkers the opportunity to own a piece of the city. Almat, as market-rate developers, believe in doing well, while doing good,” said Uche Alozie, Principal at Almat Group. “We are excited to be providing affordable housing that will ensure hardworking NYC families who are the soul of the city are able to be part of the homeownership arena.”

"New York’s affordable housing options must be as diverse as the needs of the families who call this city home, and affordable homeownership is a critical piece of that puzzle,” said Judi Kende, Vice President and New York Market Leader at Enterprise Community Partners. “Enterprise was proud to originate the loan that allowed Habitat for Humanity to purchase the land for Sydney House. We congratulate the new homeowners and commend HPD and all of the partners who helped make the first development in the Open Door program a reality."

To acquire the land for Sydney House, Habitat for Humanity secured an acquisition loan through the NYC Acquisition Fund, which is a partnership between the City of New York, major foundations, and lending institutions that enables developers to purchase sites or buildings for the creation or preservation of affordable housing. The $2.6 million acquisition loan was originated by Enterprise Community Loan Fund, a subsidiary of Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.

Announced as part of the accelerated Housing New York 2.0 plan last year, HPD’s Open Door program funds the new construction of cooperative and condominium buildings, as well as two to three-family homes affordable to households earning a range of incomes. 

Buildings financed under the Open Door program will be sold via lottery to income-qualifying buyers who agree to occupy the unit and comply with the program regulatory requirements for the duration of ownership or until the end of the regulatory period. If the buyer resells or refinances during the regulatory period, which will be a maximum of 40 years, they may realize up to 2 percent appreciation on the original purchase price per year of occupancy and will also be required to sell to an income-qualifying household.

Projects financed under Open Door will be required to meet the obligations of HPD’s economic opportunity programs including HireNYC and M/WBE Build Up, which promote the inclusion of local and minority/women-owned business enterprises on City-subsidized affordable housing projects.

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The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) is the nation’s largest municipal housing preservation and development agency. Its mission is to promote quality housing and diverse, thriving neighborhoods for New Yorkers through loan and development programs for new affordable housing, preservation of the affordability of the existing housing stock, enforcement of housing quality standards, and educational programs for tenants and building owners. HPD is tasked with fulfilling Mayor de Blasio’s Housing New York Plan which was recently expanded and accelerated through Housing New York 2.0 to complete the initial goal of 200,000 homes two years ahead of schedule—by 2022, and achieve an additional 100,000 homes over the following four years, for a total of 300,000 homes by 2026. For full details visit www.nyc.gov/hpd and for regular updates on HPD news and services, connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @NYCHousing.