pr_01-27-2016

Elected Officials, City and State Agencies, Partners, and Community Residents Celebrate Completion of Gateway Elton Street Phase II

$60 million mixed-use, energy-efficient development brings affordable housing, retail, and jobs as part of redevelopment of the emerging community of
Spring Creek, Brooklyn, NY

Features the largest solar energy system in New York State

Tribute and Dedication for Alan Epstein, respected colleague and affordable housing attorney, for the renaming of the project to the “Alan Epstein Apartments”

 

Brooklyn, NY – January 27, 2016 – Elected officials, city and state agencies, partners, and community residents joined Hudson Companies, Inc., Related Retail LP and CAMBA Housing Ventures to celebrate the completion of Gateway Elton Street Phase II (Gateway II) in the Spring Creek section of Brooklyn. The second phase of the mixed-use, energy-efficient Gateway Elton Street development brings 175 affordable and green rental units (inclusive of the superintendent’s unit), 24,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and community facilities, 750 construction jobs, and 40 permanent jobs as part of a comprehensive effort by the City and its development partners to create a strong, vibrant and self-sustaining neighborhood. At completion, the three-phase Gateway Elton Street development will provide a total of 659 apartments and approximately 60,000-square-feet of ground floor, neighborhood-based commercial space, including a childcare center, pharmacy, convenience shops and restaurants.

The event also included a special tribute and dedication to an affordable housing leader and friend, Alan Epstein of Hirschen Singer & Epstein, who passed away in 2013. As a tribute to Mr. Epstein for his involvement in the project and his contributions to the affordable housing industry, the buildings will be renamed “The Alan Epstein Apartments.

“This project further represents our company’s dedication to transforming communities through the development of exciting and complex residential projects that address the long-term sustainability and healthy living standards for the residents and communities where we work,” stated Aaron Koffman, Principal of The Hudson Companies. “Being a part of the development of this evolving community has been extremely satisfying. By creating 175 affordable apartments for low- to moderate-income New Yorkers earning between 40%- 60% of the Area Median Income, we, in partnership with Related Retail LP and CAMBA, are helping create opportunities for all New Yorkers.  Additionally, it is our honor to pay tribute to our colleague and friend, Alan Epstein of the law firm Hirschen Singer and Epstein, for his dedication to the completion of this project and to his years of service in the affordable housing industry before he passed away two years ago. We have renamed the properties the “Alan Epstein Apartments” in memory of his work and to note his legacy in our industry. Finally, we must acknowledge Cheever Development and CH Builders as first-rate construction partners on these developments.”

“High quality housing should be available and affordable to all New Yorkers regardless of income,” said James S. Rubin, Commissioner of New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR). “In his State of the State address, Governor Andrew Cuomo demonstrated his commitment to expanding housing opportunities in his $20 billion, five-year plan. We are fully dedicated to achieving this goal to create and transform communities such as Gateway Elton Phase II in Spring Creek, across the State. The components of this mixed-use complex reflect HCR’s long-standing commitment to inclusive, diverse and culturally-rich neighborhoods that connect neighbors to each other, convenient shopping and welcoming open spaces. Thanks to all our partners at the State Office of Mental Health and NYSERDA, and New York City, CAMBA, Related Companies and Hudson Companies and the financial sector.

“I want to congratulate Hudson Companies on the completion of this award-winning development, and welcome the residents to their new homes,” said HPD Commissioner Vicki Been. “Gateway Elton is a shining example of how we can harness vacant city-owned land to create an economically diverse and commercially vibrant community. It is only right that this transformative development that serves 175 low-income New Yorkers be named in honor of one of our most creative, thoughtful and tenacious partners in affordable housing, Alan Epstein. My heart goes out to his family, friends, and colleagues as we honor his memory today. I would like to thank all of our partners in city and state government, all of our elected officials, and development partners for their hard work and dedication in making New York City a more affordable city.”

“HDC is proud to have played a role in the transformation of this new vibrant and self-sustaining Spring Creek community,” said Gary Rodney, President of HDC. “It is fitting that this innovative, award-winning project is named after our colleague Alan Epstein, who reinvented our approach to financing supportive housing developments and made it possible for HDC to fund critical projects like Gateway Elton that provide much-needed affordable homes for low-income New Yorkers, along with the services families need to thrive. I want to thank HPD, HCR, NYSERDA, Hudson Companies, Related, CAMBA, and all our partners and elected officials, including Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, Assembly Member Charles Barron, and Councilwoman Inez Barron, for helping to bring this project to fruition.”

The Gateway II development includes three buildings located at 516 and 524 Vandalia Avenue and 526 Schroeders Avenue, and features apartments ranging in size from studios to four bedrooms. All units are available to low-income New Yorkers earning an annual income as low as $24,200 for an individual, and up to $46,620 for a family of three. Thirty apartments are set aside for supportive housing for individuals sponsored by the New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) who are transitioning to independent living; Services for the Under Served (SUS) is providing rent- and case-management assistance for these residents. Residents applied to live in the fully-occupied development via HPD’s housing lottery on NYC Housing Connect, at www.nyc.gov/housingconnect

“Safe, stable, and affordable housing is the key to helping individuals with behavioral health concerns transition back to life in the community,” said OMH Commissioner Dr. Ann Marie T. Sullivan. “The Gateway II project provides a space for recovery to flourish, enabling New Yorkers to receive the assistance they need to succeed and thrive. Under Governor Cuomo's direction, the Office of Mental Health is proud to have helped develop more than 6,000 units of safe, secure, and affordable housing in the last four years, with an additional 8,000 units in the pipeline.”

“Our goal at Wells Fargo is to support long-term economic growth and improve the quality of life for everyone in our communities. The Gateway Elton II project is one way that we can meet this goal by providing debt and equity financing for 175 new, energy efficient, affordable housing units to such deserving New Yorkers. As a native of Brooklyn, I am proud of being a small part of revitalizing a former landfill into a vibrant new community, and preserving the economic diversity of this great borough” said Page Travelstead, Vice President, Wells Fargo Bank. “We are honored to be a part of the newly renamed Alan Epstein Apartments, a fitting tribute to a fierce advocate of affordable housing and a wonderful man. Congratulations to Hudson Companies, CAMBA Housing Ventures, Related Retail, HPD, HDC, NYSERDA, HCR and everyone else who worked on this remarkable project.”

“Gateway Elton Street will ultimately offer residents not only both needed affordable housing and the resources that are invaluable to a neighborhood’s quality of life. Moreover, this project addresses our duty to the families of East New York to develop once-neglected sites into true community assets, particularly for the residents that made this rebirth possible. I am proud to have worked with neighbors, developers, and elected officials to support this development, and I am excited to join in celebrating the completion of Phase II,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.

Gateway II was designed to LEED for Homes Platinum and Enterprise Green Communities standards, as well as New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s energy efficiency standards. It has 314,000 watts of solar photovoltaic panels installed on its roof, making it the largest solar energy system in New York State. Combined with Gateway I, 500,000 watts of renewable energy have been installed in the three-phase development, with the ultimate goal of one million watts at completion of Gateway III. Additional green features include a tight envelope of well-insulated exterior walls, high-efficiency boilers, Energy Star windows and appliances, unitized ventilation, and water-saving fixtures to reduce energy and water waste, and control costs both for tenants and the long-term operation of the buildings. Low-VOC paints and finishes, natural wood floors, urea/formaldehyde-free cabinetry, and proper ventilation promote healthy indoor air quality. Gateway II will offset more than 456,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per year.  

Glenn Goldstein, President of Related Retail, a division of Related Companies said, “The development and preservation of affordable housing has been the foundation of Related for over 40 years and we are extremely proud of the innovative public-private partnership that led to not only these 175 new affordable residences, but thousands of jobs and an entirely new mixed-use community in East New York.” 

“CAMBA is proud to be here today as we cut the ribbon on Gateway Elton Street Phase II – part of one of the most innovative and forward-thinking affordable housing development projects in New York City,” said Joanne M. Oplustil, President and CEO of CAMBA/CAMBA Housing Ventures. “Gateway Elton will provide 659 affordable and supportive homes for people who desperately need them. As a planned community, Gateway Elton includes vital services to ensure its residents flourish – schools, childcare centers, retail stores, grocery markets, services and so much more. Like the remarkable Alan Epstein to whom it is dedicated, Gateway Elton is a testament to the value of smart, compassionate private-public partnership.”

Oliver Chase, Principal at Hirschen Singer & Epstein LLP noted that his firm “is extremely proud and honored to have been part of the Gateway Elton Street development team. Upon completion, Gateway Elton Street will comprise a total of 659 apartments and approximately 70,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space, including a supermarket, childcare center, convenience shops and restaurants.” He also remarked that “the project will be a beautiful, vibrant, and affordable community and home for thousands of hard-working New Yorkers. We congratulate The Hudson Companies, Related, CAMBA/CAMBA Housing Venture, and all of the city, state and private partners that made this development a reality. It is an inspiring example of what can be achieved through true public/private partnership in pursuit of holistic community building. We are also deeply appreciative of the tribute being made today to the memory of Alan Epstein, our partner and dear friend. Alan was a passionate advocate for affordable housing and a leader in the field for many years. He would be very gratified today to see the incredible community he helped create at Gateway Elton Street.”

“The benefits of investing in green affordable housing are threefold: it improves health outcomes, lowers utility and maintenance costs, and reduces carbon emissions. Thanks to Hudson Companies and its partners’ commitment to building green and healthy housing, Gateway Elton is providing 175 families with a new home, a new community, and a healthy future,” said Judi Kende, Vice President and New York Market Leader, Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.

Each apartment features pre-installed workstations and bathroom vanities supplied by Brooklyn Woods, a Gowanus-based socially-conscious contractor that employs and trains low-income New Yorkers in woodworking, cabinetmaking and fabrication. Additional amenities include computer rooms, free Wi-Fi access in the common areas, children’s playrooms, outdoor playgrounds and exercise equipment, and indoor fitness rooms. 

Funding and support for Gateway II was made possible by a joint venture between the City of New York, The Hudson Companies, and the many private partners who have been dedicated to bringing affordable housing and revitalization to East New York. HPD provided the land, $7 million in construction financing, and $8.5 million in permanent financing through its Low Income Program. HDC provided $30.4 million in tax exempt bonds, $11.4 million in loan subsidy, a $9.6 million senior permanent mortgage, and an $11.4 million secondary mortgage through its Low-Income Affordable Marketplace Program. HCR provided $945,000 in New York State Low-Income Housing Tax Credits. Wells Fargo Bank provided a $30.4 million letter of credit and made a $25.3 million direct LIHTC/SLIHC investment. Richman Housing Resources provided predevelopment financing. The Brooklyn Borough President’s Office awarded the project $1.2 million in Reso A funds, and NYSERDA provided $596,044 for participation in the Multi-Family Performance and Solar PV Program. Finally, Gateway II received strong support from then-Councilman Charles Barron and Brooklyn Community Board 5 Chair Nathan Bradley.
 

About New York State Homes and Community Renewal:

New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) agencies include the Affordable Housing Corporation, the Division of Housing and Community Renewal, the Housing Finance Agency, State of New York Mortgage Agency, Housing Trust Fund Corporation and others. 2016 marks the fourth year of Governor Cuomo’s $1 billion statewide House NY program, whose goal is to create or preserve 14,300 affordable units by 2018. As the largest investment in New York State’s affordable housing stock in at least 15 years, House NY investments will keep thousands of low- and moderate-income Mitchell-Lama units affordable for another 40 years. In 2015, HCR was the #1 bond issuer in the nation with $2.5 billion issued and stands ready to make good on the Governor’s new $10 billion 100,000 unit House NY 2020 commitment.

About New York State Office of Mental Health:

New York State has a large, multi-faceted mental health system that serves more than 700,000 individuals each year. The Office of Mental Health (OMH) operates psychiatric centers across the State, and also regulates, certifies and oversees more than 4,500 programs, which are operated by local governments and nonprofit agencies. These programs include various inpatient and outpatient programs, emergency, community support, residential and family care programs.

About New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD):

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: A Five-Borough Ten-Year Plan to create and preserve 200,000 affordable units for New Yorkers at the very lowest incomes to those in the middle class. For more information visit www.nyc.gov/hpd and for regular updates on HPD news and services, connect with us via www.facebook.com/nychpd and www.twitter.com/nychousing.

 

About the New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC):

HDC is the nation’s largest municipal Housing Finance Agency and is charged with helping to finance the creation or preservation of affordable housing under Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Housing New York plan. Since 2003, HDC has financed more than 120,000 housing units using over $13.7 billion in bonds, and provided in excess of $1.6 billion in subsidy from corporate reserves. HDC has been the #1 issuer in the nation of mortgage revenue bonds for affordable multi-family housing in each of the last three years on Thomson Reuters’ annual list of multi-family bond issuers. HDC again achieved this distinction despite issuing bonds for only one city, compared to the Statewide jurisdictions of the other ranked agencies.  For additional information, visit: www.nychdc.com.

About The Hudson Companies:

The Hudson Companies Incorporated is a private real estate development company started in 1986 that has grown into a leading developer of new housing for all market segments in the New York metropolitan area.  Hudson’s five principals have a hands-on approach to managing the details of the development process from property acquisition, project finance and design, through construction and marketing.  The firm is experienced in both new construction and rehabilitation, with over 10,000 units across 61 developments either completed or in development.  Since its inception, developing new affordable housing has been a fundamental part of Hudson’s business strategy and organizational culture.  As with all of its developments, Hudson’s success in developing new affordable housing derives from its hands-on management of the details of development, ability to navigate and use complex programs, and sophistication with public-private partnerships. 

About Related Companies:

Related Companies is the most prominent privately owned real estate firm in the United States. Formed over 40 years ago, Related is a fully integrated, highly diversified industry leader with experience in virtually every aspect of development, acquisitions, management, finance, marketing and sales. Headquartered in New York City, Related has offices and major developments in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, South Florida, Washington, D.C., Abu Dhabi, London, São Paulo and Shanghai and boasts a team of approximately 3,000 professionals. The Company’s existing portfolio of real estate assets, valued at over $20 billion, is made up of best-in-class mixed-use, residential, retail, office and affordable properties in premier high-barrier-to-entry markets. Related has developed preeminent mixed-use projects such as Time Warner Center in New York and CityPlace in West Palm Beach and is currently developing the 28-acre Hudson Yards project on Manhattan’s West Side. Related is staunchly committed to sustainable design with over $15 billion in green development completed or underway. Related also owns Equinox® Fitness Clubs, further expanding the company's capabilities into the health and fitness arena and enhancing the value of its properties through an exclusive, branded amenity and lifestyle offering. Related is a partner in Union Square Events, the catering, culture, sports, and events business of Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group and CORE, a boutique residential brokerage. For more information about Related Companies please visit www.related.com.

About CAMBA/CAMBA Housing Ventures (CHV):

Founded in 1977, CAMBA is one of New York City’s largest community-based social service non-profit organizations with a budget of approximately $120 million and a diverse staff of approximately 1,500 employees. CAMBA – whose mission is to provide services that connect people with opportunities to enhance their quality of life – annually provides services to more than 45,000 individuals and families in six core areas: Economic Development, Education and Youth Development, Family Support, Health, Housing, and Legal Services. Learn more at www.camba.org.

Since 1991, CAMBA has been addressing the City’s housing crisis, and today this portfolio includes permanent affordable and supportive housing, homelessness prevention, housing relocation, and emergency and transitional housing. In response to a pressing need for permanent, stable and affordable housing for New York City residents, CAMBA created an affiliated non-profit affordable housing development corporation in 2005 called CAMBA Housing Ventures, Inc. (CHV).  CHV envisions vital neighborhoods where affordable housing plays a critical role in the long-term economic and social success of lower-income individuals and families. CHV's mission is to develop sustainable and energy-efficient buildings that provide safe and affordable housing for low-income and formerly homeless families and individuals. CHV’s portfolio of completed or in progress developments are located throughout New York City, including work-out acquisition, new construction, rehabilitation, and preservation projects. CHV and CAMBA form a unique team comprised of a community-based, award-winning non-profit affordable housing developer and an experienced social service provider.    

CHV set a  goal in 2005 to have in the pipeline and/or partner on to create 1,000 units of affordable housing by 2015 and has nearly doubled this goal as of 2015 (2,057 units, $617 million in public/private investment). To date, CHV has completed developments totaling 820 units in New York City, representing $242 million in public and private investment. In addition, CHV has approximately 104 units in predevelopment, representing over $25 million in public and private investment. Learn more at www.cambahousingventures.org.

About Wells Fargo & Company:

Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.8 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through 8,700 locations, 13,000 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com) and mobile banking, and has offices in 36 countries to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 30 on Fortune’s 2015 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Wells Fargo perspectives are also available at Wells Fargo Blogs and Wells Fargo Stories.

About Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.:

Enterprise works with partners nationwide to build opportunity. We create and advocate for affordable homes in thriving communities linked to jobs, good schools, health care and transportation. We lend funds, finance development and manage and build affordable housing, while shaping new strategies, solutions and policy. Over more than 30 years, Enterprise has created nearly 340,000 homes, invested $18.6 billion and touched millions of lives. Join us at www.EnterpriseCommunity.com  or www.EnterpriseCommunity.org.