New York Yankee Mark Teixeira, Jazz Musicians Wynton Marsalis and Carlos Henriquez Join Congressman Charlie Rangel, HPD, HDC, Jonathan Rose Companies and Harlem RBI and DREAM Charter School Educators, Parents, Students and Partners to Celebrate New $84 Million Development
The mixed-use development in East Harlem provides a new home for DREAM Charter School, headquarters for Harlem RBI and 88 units of affordable housing
(New York, New York – October 15, 2015) – Leading New York entertainers, athletes and city officials joined Harlem RBI and DREAM Charter School, Jonathan Rose Companies and Civic Builders, hundreds of school kids and partners in East Harlem today to celebrate the grand opening of The East Harlem Center for Living and Learning, located at 1991 Second Avenue in the East Harlem/El Barrio neighborhood of Manhattan.
This unique development is the product of a wide range of partnerships including New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC), Enterprise Community Partners, Inc. (Enterprise) and Chase. The new 143,000- square-foot multi-family, mixed-use development consists of 88 affordable housing units, a 54,000-square-foot home for DREAM Charter School, and 6,000-square-feet of non-profit office space for Harlem RBI.
“Harlem RBI has a long-standing tradition of enriching the lives of children, young adults and families residing in East Harlem and South Bronx,” said U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer. “I am thrilled that Harlem RBI’s new home will now also be home to a brand new school for over 500 underserved students, affordable housing for struggling families, and a greenspace for the community. This ribbon-cutting ceremony signifies the importance of public-private partnerships in New York City communities and I am confident this new space will create more opportunities for future generations.”
“Congratulations to Executive Director Richard Berlin on achieving a new milestone and for his continued guidance to lead Harlem RBI in creating programs that challenge and engage our inner-city youth,” said Congressman Charlie Rangel. “It's through these opportunities where we see a strengthening of our community, providing our children a safe environment to transition and grow into successful adults. I look forward to witnessing the positive impact of the new facility in our beloved neighborhood.”
“Every affordable apartment we bring online is one more family that has security. And apartment by apartment, building by building, we are confronting this affordability crisis,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “What’s so exciting about this project is that it not only lifts up low-income families with affordable housing, but invests in our students as well. This will be a phenomenal addition to Harlem.”
“Today is a big day. It's an amazing feeling to see the building come to completion and even more exciting to think about all the children and community members that will have access to this beautiful facility,” said New York Yankee Mark Teixeira. “When I became a New York Yankee, I also committed myself to Harlem RBI and DREAM at the same time. Now six years later, I'm thankful to experience this incredible milestone with the organization.”
“The Harlem RBI DREAM Charter School will be a great boon for East Harlem and provide much needed services to the neighborhood,” said Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. “I'm proud to join the great Yankees slugger Mark Teixeira to unveil this new school which will not only provide education services to our youth, but also affordable housing to the community as a whole.”
“Schools serve as anchors in their communities and provide safe and supportive learning environments for children, but also serve as critical hubs for families and community members. This building is combining a school with affordable housing and will undoubtedly create an exciting hub of learning. This is an exciting day for the Bronx and the whole City—and I look forward to visiting this school community and celebrating its many successes to come,” said Carmen Fariña, New York City Schools Chancellor.
“This is a moment over two decades in the making. This new building provide a quality educational experience for over 500 K-8 students and fits into the Harlem RBI philosophy of play, learn, grow,” said Richard Berlin, Executive Director, Harlem RBI. “It also represents the dedication of hundreds of educators, community leaders, Harlem RBI families, New York policy makers, and some of our finest athletes and most generous donors. Without the shared contributions of these individuals and organizations, we would not be here today and we look forward to working with past, current and future generations in this community to fight poverty and change lives for the better for generations to come.”
“The East Harlem Center for Living and Learning is a model of public, private, and community cooperation that provides three critical aspects to enhance opportunity for its neighborhood,” said Jonathan F.P. Rose, founder of Jonathan Rose Companies. “These include green affordable housing, which provides families with a safe, stable base; an extraordinary school to prepare the community’s children for the opportunities and challenges of the 21st Century; and a rehabilitated park that provides families access to nature and recreation.”
“Civic Builders is proud to be a partner in the opening of the first public school built in East Harlem since 1968. Developed with the extraordinary partnership of Harlem RBI, DREAM Charter School, New York City School Construction Authority and Jonathan Rose Companies, The East Harlem Center for Living and Learning represents exceptional cross-sector collaboration with the common goals of improving education, revitalizing a community, and changing lives. We look forward to watching Harlem RBI and DREAM Charter School’s positive impact in East Harlem for generations to come,” said David Umansky, CEO and co-founder of Civic Builders.
“More and more often we find that the production of new dynamic affordable housing developments is only possible through deep partnerships and the commitment of local organizations. The East Harlem Center for Living and Learning is a wonderful example of this. Here, we have worked side by side with our partners in city government at HDC and NYCHA, as well as Harlem RBI, Jonathan Rose Companies, and the DREAM Charter School to take advantage of underused land to provide critical affordable housing in a multifaceted development that will enrich the East Harlem community for generations to come,” said HPD Commissioner Vicki Been. “I want to thank everyone who helped make this development possible, and look forward to continuing our work together to build a more diverse and equitable New York City, one neighborhood at a time.”
“Today marks an incredible milestone. This mixed-used development brings online much-needed affordable housing, a brand new school, and new space for Harlem RBI, a local organization that empowers the youth of this community to recognize their full potential,” said Gary Rodney, President of HDC. “HDC is proud to finance dynamic, high-quality affordable housing developments that strengthen our neighborhoods and foster a more sustainable City. We thank our elected officials, Harlem RBI, Jonathan Rose, and all our public, private, and community partners for the vision and hard work that made this project possible.”
“NYCHA is proud to be involved in this partnership that has brought vital investment to the East Harlem Community,” said Shola Olatoye, NYCHA’s Chair and CEO. “A success story 20 years in the making, this project is an example of what’s possible when partners come together to create more affordable housing and educational opportunities. Through collaboration, we can create safe, clean and more connected communities at NYCHA developments across the City.”
"The opening today is the result of years and years of work and commitment by so many, from Harlem RBI to leaders in City government to community and business leaders in the East Harlem, and seeing this all come to fruition is really something special,” said Former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg. “East Harlem will see the benefits of this development immediately, but the greater impact will come in the future: for the families accessing the affordable housing created and the students receiving a top notch education -- they are our future."
“At Enterprise, we believe that housing is the foundation for opportunity; combining it with good schools, jobs, and transit is a recipe for success,” said Terri Ludwig, President and CEO of Enterprise Community Partners, Inc. “Unfortunately, too many New Yorkers are housing insecure—or paying 50% or more of their income on housing—making access to these necessities a challenge and leaving many at risk of losing their homes. But thanks to the incredible public-private partnership of The East Harlem Center for Living and Learning and sustained investment in East Harlem, the residents of the Yomo Toro Apartments, 450 students at DREAM Charter School, and countless East Harlem residents now have the tools they need to live a more secure life.”
“At Chase, we believe we have a fundamental responsibility to help the communities where we live and work, and helping to develop affordable housing here in in New York City is a prime example of those efforts," said David Walsh, Northeast Division Manager of Community Development Banking for Chase. “We’re proud to support the development of this project, which will make a profound impact on the Harlem community.”
ABOUT THE PROJECT
East Harlem Center for Living and Learning is a multifamily, mixed-use building at Washington Houses that includes:
- A K-8 public charter school
- Office and program space for Harlem RBI
- 88 affordable housing units for low-income households
- A newly renovated Blake Hobbs public park
The building participates in NYSERDA’s Multifamily Performance Program and was built according to Enterprise Green Communities criteria, the national standard for green building in affordable housing. It is expected to receive the Gold Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating for its green building design and construction. Sustainable elements of the development include energy efficient boilers, low VOC paint, low “e” windows, and use of low-emitting, recycled, and locally-produced materials. The site is easily accessible to public transportation, with the M15 2nd Avenue bus and Lexington Avenue subway immediately accessible.
The school features a full chef’s kitchen, a new “gymnatorium” made largely from repurposed wood, and an outdoors space with a garden. The 11-story affordable housing complex totals 80,000-square-feet and consists of 18 studios, 41 one-bedroom units, 25 two-bedroom units, and four three-bedroom units. It includes an exercise room, bike storage room, computer room, social service office, laundry facilities, and a landscaped terrace. Units have been designated for low-income households earning less than 60 percent of the area median income (AMI), which is affordable to individuals earning no more than $36,120 and $46,440 for a family of three. Income levels are calculated annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The above incomes are set according to HUD’s 2014 calculations.
The total development cost for the facility is approximately $84 million, with $46.5 million in funding for the school and program office space, and $26.7 million in funding for the Yoro Tomo Apartments. The complete project was financed through private and public funding. The school, office space, and park were financed through a $32.5 million grant from the School Construction Authority’s Charter Facilities Matching Grant Program and $20 million raised by Harlem RBI. Mark Teixeira pledged $1 million in 2011 toward the Capital Campaign and launched DreamTeam 25, his personal campaign to help raise the additional $20 million needed to complete the project.
The affordable housing portion was financed through a $13.5 million first mortgage and a $5.7 million second mortgage from HDC, a $6.2 million loan from HPD, $750,000 in Reso A funding from City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, and a $142,654 NYSERDA grant. Additionally, Enterprise provided $10.5 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credit equity, sourced by JP Morgan Capital Corporation. Enterprise also provided a $2.1 million predevelopment loan. Chase provided a $13.6 million standby letter of credit to support the construction of this project.
The affordable housing units have been rented through NYC Housing Connect, an Open Lottery System to ensure fair and equitable distribution of housing to income-eligible applicants. Marketing of the apartments and the application process for the lottery typically begins when construction is approximately 70 percent complete. For more information regarding the affordable housing lottery process or if you would like to receive an e-mail when HPD updates its available apartment and home website listings for City-subsidized housing in the five boroughs, please visit the ‘Find Housing’ page under the ‘Renter’ tab at www.nyc.gov/hpd. Current housing lotteries are also available at www.nyc.gov/housingconnect. Applicants may submit either a paper application or an electronic application. Duplicate applications will be disqualified.
ABOUT NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING PRESERVATION AND DEVELOPMENT (HPD):
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: 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. In Affordable Housing Finance Magazine’s most recently published annual listing of the nation’s top ten funders of multi-family housing, HDC is the only municipal entity on the list. HDC is also the third largest affordable housing lender in the U.S. after Citi and Wells Fargo, ranking ahead of such industry leaders as Bank of America and Capital One. For additional information, visit: www.nychdc.com.
ABOUT HARLEM RBI AND DREAM CHARTER SCHOOL:
Harlem RBI, a 501(c)3 non profit organization, began in 1991 when a group of volunteers transformed an abandoned, garbage-strewn lot into two baseball diamonds for the youth of East Harlem. Since then, Harlem RBI has grown to serve more than 1,700 boys and girls, ages 5-22, with year-round academic, sports and enrichment programs. Harlem RBI’s comprehensive approach to youth development replaces the barriers inner-city youth typically face with concrete opportunities to build the skills and confidence needed to graduate high school, matriculate to college and break the cycle of poverty. Since 2005, 96% of Harlem RBI seniors have graduated high school, 94% of seniors have been accepted into college and 99% of participants have avoided teen parenthood.
In 2008, after 17 years of working in East Harlem and producing exceptional results, Harlem RBI opened DREAM Charter School. DREAM’s mission is to prepare students for high-performing high schools, colleges and beyond through a rigorous academic program that develops critical thinkers who demonstrate a love of learning, strong character, and a commitment to wellness and active citizenship. DREAM inspires every student to recognize their potential and realize their dreams. Today the school serves nearly 500 students in grades Pre-K through 8.
About Jonathan Rose Companies, Inc.:
Jonathan Rose Companies is a national real estate firm managing over $1.5 billion of projects and investments across three integrated business lines: investment management, development and project management. The firm develops green affordable and mixed-use housing, serves as owner’s representative to non-profits developing educational, health and cultural facilities, and acquires, preserves and greens existing affordable and mixed-use housing. Founded by Jonathan F.P. Rose in 1989, the firm has a distinguished track record of transforming communities through practical, hands-on real estate strategies and innovative green solutions.
ABOUT CIVIC BUILDERS:
Civic Builders is a non-profit charter school facility developer and lender that partners with the nation’s best educators to make high-achieving schools possible. Dedicated to relieving the real estate burden for charter school operators, Civic Builders tailors each facility to fit the unique needs of their partner schools. Founded in 2002 and based in New York City, Civic Builders has 21 schools completed or in development that will soon serve nearly 11,000 students in high-need communities in the Northeast. More information can be found at www.civicbuilders.org.
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.