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Nation's Largest Public Housing Complex Gets New Roofs to Combat Mold

 Workers replaced roofs at all 26 buildings in the development after starting construction last summer.
Workers replaced roofs at all 26 buildings in the development after starting construction last summer.
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NYCHA

LONG ISLAND CITY — An $87 million project to install new roofs on every building of the country's largest public housing complex wrapped up last week in an effort to combat leaks that cause mold in residents' homes, officials said.

The work replaced roofs on all 26 buildings of the Queensbridge Houses, between 21st Street and Vernon Boulevard just north of the Queensboro Bridge. The roofs had not been updated since the 1960s, officials said.

Officials touted the improvements as an effort to tackle the mold, but a spokesman could not say how many residences had been affected by the problem.

"Leaks in old roofs are the root cause of mold and other major problems our NYCHA residents face," Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement Thursday,

The repairs are part of a $300 million project to upgrade NYCHA infrastructure citywide that will affect almost 13,000 tenants, according to officials.

The project also included the installation of new window sills and brickwork repairs throughout the Queensbridge development.

Work was started first on the NYCHA campuses that had roofs in the worst shape, beginning at Queensbridge because it's the largest and the upgrades would impact the most people, more than 6,500 residents, a NYCHA spokesman said.

The complex, which contains more than 3,000 apartments, is slated for other upgrades including free broadband access and new safety lighting which is currently being installed, officials said.

The roof repairs, which began in the summer of 2015, were expected to wrap up in July of 2017 but finished ahead of schedule, officials said.