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$3.3 Million Allocated for Affordable Housing in Brooklyn, Boro Prez Says

By Camille Bautista | August 20, 2015 6:37pm | Updated on August 21, 2015 4:19pm
 Borough President Eric Adams is allocating more than $3.3 million for the preservation and construction of affordable units throughout Brooklyn.
Borough President Eric Adams is allocating more than $3.3 million for the preservation and construction of affordable units throughout Brooklyn.
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DNAinfo/Camille Bautista

EAST NEW YORK — More than $3.3 million will go toward preserving and constructing affordable housing throughout Brooklyn, Borough President Eric Adams announced Thursday.

The funding will help renovate a total of 77 units throughout Bushwick, Crown Heights and East New York, and help build hundreds of new apartments in areas like Cypress Hills and Sunset Park, officials said.

“We must make sure these communities continue to be affordable for the residents who made it possible,” Adams said. “They held on to the communities of Brooklyn and they must have a part of Brooklyn’s future.”

Elected officials and local tenants joined Adams outside East New York’s 442 Logan St., a building with units set for renovation under the allocated funding.

The structure had been retrofitted 25 years ago, making rehabilitation long overdue, officials said.

“Preservation is a lot more cost-effective than construction,” said City Councilman Jumaane Williams, who chairs the committee on housing and buildings.

"Any housing plan that does not focus on preservation is not a real housing plan.”

Upgrades to the selected 77 units throughout the borough would cover repairs such as roofing, heating systems, and new window installations.

The $3.338 million allows local development organizations to rehabilitate units while maintaining low rents for longtime locals — many of whom make between $25,000 to $45,000 a year, according to Ismene Speliotis, executive director of the Mutual Housing Association of New York, which owns and manages 526 affordable apartment in neighborhoods including Crown Heights, Bushwick, Brownsville and East New York.

MHANY will receive $750,000 for the renovation of its existing units and for new construction in East New York, where many residents list housing as the district’s number one priority.

Other organizations include the Local Development Corporation of East New York, which will receive $500,000 to create 130 units at the ReNew Lots Market site, according to William Wilkins, director of economic development at Local Development Corporation of East New York (LDCENY).

The apartments would be available at the area’s area median income, which comes in at roughly $33,000, Wilkins said.

“Presently what people are paying for rent, they used to pay for mortgages in Brooklyn,” he added.

“This community has been long neglected and we want to make sure they have a voice in the transformation.”

Additional funding recipients include Crown Heights’ Crown Gardens Housing Corporation with $300,000 for plaza waterproofing, Brownsville’s Howard Houses with $100,000 for security cameras, and the Fifth Avenue Committee, which will receive $500,000 for the Sunset Park Library expansion.

Construction for new units is expected to begin as soon as October, officials said.