Construction has officially broken ground at 1159 River Avenue, a new 245-unit affordable housing project in the Concourse section of the South Bronx. Designed by Urban Quotient, the 19-story building will comprise 240,000 square feet. In addition to income-restricted and supportive housing, the structure will contain residential amenity spaces and a new ground-floor supermarket.
The development arrives on the heels of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s $20 billion five-year Housing Plan, which aims to build or preserve more than 100,000 affordable homes including 6,000 with on-site supportive services for the most vulnerable New Yorkers. In The Bronx, the initiative has created or preserved more than 15,000 affordable homes, which equates more than $1.3 billion of investment.
“We continue to make unprecedented investments in affordable housing that will help tackle the dual inequality and homelessness crises,” Governor Cuomo said. “New developments like this project demonstrate our ongoing efforts to provide Bronx residents with high-quality, energy-efficient homes with supportive services for the most vulnerable among us.”
The new building will include 148 units set aside for individuals and families who have experienced homelessness and those with mental illness. Of these units, 128 households will have access to on-site supportive services and rental assistance funded through the Governor’s Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative. The supportive services will be administered by the New York State Office of Mental Health in collaboration with Community Access and will include primary care, mental health services, vocational training, nutrition, harm reduction strategies, social support, and more.
The remaining rental units will be reserved for low-income individuals and families, plus one additional apartment for the live-in superintendent.
Amenity spaces will include an art gallery, exercise room, laundry facilities, outdoor terraces, and computer rooms. The property is located less than a ten-minute walk from Yankee Stadium.
“Projects like 1159 River Avenue are helping Bronx residents live safely in high-quality, affordable homes and achieve independence,” said Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. “Building more supportive housing is critical as we continue our fight against homelessness.”
The New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) is the government agency responsible for development. Additional members of the development team include J. Equities II, an affiliate of affordable housing developer Maddd Equities, as well as Community Access.
HCR’s financing for 1159 River Avenue includes $25 million in permanent tax-exempt bonds, Low-Income Housing Tax Credits that will generate $43 million in equity, and $16 million in subsidy. An award from the New York State Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative will provide $3 million annually for services and operations. The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development is providing an additional $26 million of subsidy through its Supportive Housing Loan Program.
“The 245 households that will live here will benefit from great amenities, excellent transit access, conveniently located stores and schools, and nearby recreational space,” said HCR commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas. “We are proud to partner with Community Access on this development to provide modern apartments and vital mental health care services to New Yorkers in need.”