For Immediate Release: December 08, 2020

The public trust would enable NYCHA to access valuable federal vouchers, have flexible procurement capabilities and codify residents’ rights into state law

NEW YORK – NYCHA Chairman & CEO Greg Russ today will testify before the New York State Assembly on legislation that would establish a Public Trust as part of NYCHA’s recapitalization strategy for 110,000 apartments.

To read Chair Russ’ full testimony, please go here.

The Public Trust is part of NYCHA’s Blueprint for Change, a series of innovative ideas that outline the Authority’s organizational, stabilization, and jobs and recovery strategies to improve and preserve NYCHA’s more than 300 developments and 175,000 apartments for generations to come and position the Authority as a stable, sustainable resource.

“This Public Trust is a groundbreaking public housing solution and an important component of NYCHA’s stabilization strategy as part of our innovative Blueprint for Change,” said NYCHA Chair Greg Russ.“It will give NYCHA the opportunity to pursue recapitalization of the entire portfolio and ensure safe, reliable housing for generations to come. Additionally, the Trust will use flexible procurement methods and codify tenant rights and protections into state law. We are grateful to our partners in the legislature for introducing the bill that would establish this Trust."

NYCHA has an approximately $40 billion capital need to address the full Physical Needs Assessment plus lead, asbestos and ADA requirements across the entire portfolio, and that need grows by at least $1 billion annually.

"Improving the living conditions of our public housing residents is a top priority of this administration. NYCHA's financial and operational challenges demand new, creative strategies to safeguard New York City's largest affordable housing stock for generations to come," said;Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Vicki Been. "The Public Trust is an opportunity to transform how NYCHA operates while further securing residents' rights, resulting in fundamental improvements to the quality of life for each NYCHA resident and the preservation of our public housing."

This stabilization strategy would enable the Authority to address $18 billion to $25 billion in capital need across roughly 110,000 apartments with end-to-end public control, operation, and day-to-day management. When combined with NYCHA 2.0 strategies across the other 62,000 apartments, the stabilization strategy and Public Trust will address the physical needs across the entire portfolio.

Establishing the Public Housing Preservation Trust, a fully public entity that draws from the Department of Education/School Construction Authority model, will allow NYCHA to access Tenant Protection Vouchers (TPVs), an extremely valuable federal resource, and give NYCHA additional procurement flexibility for massive levels of construction.

NYCHA would remain the permanent owner of the properties and enter into a long-term ground lease with the Trust. The Trust would then contract back to NYCHA for property management and maintenance services, thus retaining the public, union workforce for day-to-day management of the properties. The Trust also codifies resident rights and affordability in perpetuity with the same rent calculation into state law.

Investing in public housing is also an investment in the health of our residents and communities, paving the pathways for opportunity and success.


About the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA)

The New York City Housing Authority is the largest public housing authority in North America, housing nearly 400,000 residents. NYCHA’s mission is to increase opportunities for low- and moderate-income New Yorkers by providing safe, affordable housing and facilitating access to social and community services. Over 390,000 New Yorkers reside in NYCHA’s 316 public housing developments and PACT developments around the five boroughs. Over 190,000 receive subsidized rental assistance in private homes through the NYCHA-administered Section 8 Leased Housing Program. For more information, visit, and for regular updates on NYCHA news and services, connect with us via and