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Supportive Housing for Homeless Women and Children Planned for Bed-Stuy

 Nonprofit Providence House is looking to create supportive units on Halsey Street near Marcy Avenue and at 243 Hancock St. (pictured), to provide residences for homeless women and children.
Nonprofit Providence House is looking to create supportive units on Halsey Street near Marcy Avenue and at 243 Hancock St. (pictured), to provide residences for homeless women and children.
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Providence House

BEDFORD-STUYVESANT — Two new supportive housing projects may soon come to central Brooklyn to help homeless women and children.

Providence House — a nonprofit organization that provides residences and support for homeless individuals and women recently released from prison —  is planning two developments on Hancock and Halsey streets.

A total of 21 units at 178 Halsey St. and 243 Hancock St. near Marcy Avenue would assist residents with case management services, including parenting and financial skills.

Providence House took title of the buildings in June 2016 after being approached by the attorney general’s office and the city’s department of Housing Preservation & Development, Rita Taddonio, director of programs at the organization, told Brooklyn Community Board 3 members this month.

The two buildings were originally owned by a nonprofit that also helped homeless young mothers, according to Providence House, and the AG’s office looked to continue the services after the nonprofit was dissolved.

Both properties require a full renovation, according to architects, and once construction is complete, it will provide studio and one-bedroom apartments for single women, mothers with one child, or women with a history of chronic homelessness.

Some members of CB3’s housing and land use committee raised concerns over residents of similar facilities “roaming” the neighborhood.

Providence House runs two other supportive housing developments in the area and case managers will be on site at the new properties, according to Taddonio.

“Typically, I can say from our history we’ve been really lucky we don’t have people roaming around the neighborhood,” she said at a March 8 meeting.

“I can’t promise you 100 percent, but we’re very conscious of that.”

Twenty four-hour security will monitor comings and goings, she added, and visitors will not be allowed to stay overnight.

Individuals chosen for the permanent supportive housing will be selected through the Department of Homeless Services shelter system, Taddonio said.

The renovations of the buildings will cost about $10.4 million, and financing will come through HPD’s Supportive Housing Loan Program and low-income tax credits, according to Providence House.

The Halsey Street building is fully vacant, while the Hancock Street building is partially occupied, according to a representative from development consultant IMPACCT Brooklyn.

The organization is working to relocate the residents within the community in buildings owned by IMPACCT, and HPD has provided Section 8 vouchers to the current tenants.  

Each property is slated to get a community meeting room and staff offices, and the Hancock Street building will have a backyard for residents.

Both buildings fall within the Bedford Historic District, and construction work will have to be approved by the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission.

Providence House is seeking a letter of support from the local community board to receive city funding for the projects, and the community board is slated to send feedback to the organization before giving their approval.

The group hopes to start construction this summer and complete work by January 2019.