NYCHA Gets Ball Rolling to Fix 40,000 Units Citywide

NYCHA Logo with bright yellow background
Image source: NYCHA

The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) yesterday released a Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) to attract development partners for new projects under the Authority’s Permanent Affordability Commitment Together (PACT) program to repair and preserve more than 4,400 units in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and the Bronx.

The official (RFEI) is the first pivotal step in unlocking the funds necessary to address critical repairs and social service needs. All PACT projects will ensure that rents remain permanently affordable and residents are guaranteed comparable rights as they possess in traditional public housing.

Residents in developments participating in the PACT program will see their buildings, common spaces, and apartments modernized through extensive renovations. Repairs to individual apartments will include comprehensive work on kitchens, bathrooms, windows, and living spaces. Chronic heat and gas outages will be addressed and renovations of interiors and common spaces, as well as elevator repairs, will be completed. Additionally, there will be improvements to building security including entry systems and additional security cameras. Partnerships with social service providers improve on-site services and programming through input from residents.

Pre-qualified Partners designated through the January 2020 PACT Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process will be invited to submit proposals in response to the following projects:

  • Edenwald (2,039 units in the Bronx)
  • Samuel City (664 units in Manhattan)
  • Reid Apartments and Park Rock Consolidated (1,698 units in Brooklyn)

“The PACT program is an essential component of the Authority’s long-term vision for delivering better services to our residents,” said NYCHA Chairman and CEO Greg Russ. “We are especially interested in building relationships with a wider roster of small-scale and large-scale developers, property managers, general contractors, and social service providers to partner with on our forthcoming conversions.”

The announcement comes as NYCHA developments have struggled during the de Blasio Administration regarding falsely saying it conducted lead tests and still having problems with lead testing, a lack of heat and water, and works still not completed on some developments damaged during Superstorm Sandy in 2012.

This led to a court-ordered federal monitor over the city’s administration of NYCHA in 2018.

“For too long our community has been decimated by crumbling infrastructure. The pervasive presence of toxins in our public housing and neglected infrastructure has disproportionately wreaked havoc on people of color who largely populate the system,” said U.S. Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-Brooklyn).

“The implementation of [PACT] will bring much-needed relief to NYCHA residents in Brooklyn and across our city. I am proud to support efforts that will improve the quality of life for thousands of New Yorkers and look forward to strengthening this partnership to aid our community in rebuilding in the face of coronavirus,” she added.

Through PACT, developments will be included in the federal Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) and convert to a more stable, federally funded program called Project-Based Section 8. PACT depends on partnerships with private and nonprofit development partners.

Once the property is converted to Project-Based Section 8, NYCHA will lease the land and buildings to the development partners, who will conduct the repairs, serve as the new on-site property manager, and provide enhanced social services and community programs.

NYCHA will continue to own the land and buildings, administer the Section 8 subsidy and waitlist, and monitor conditions at the development.  NYCHA will ensure that the partners adhere to standards outlined in the RAD Roundtable Guiding Principles created NYCHA residents and advocacy groups to preserve resident protections and guarantee permanent affordability. More information on NYCHA 2.0 initiatives can be found here and here.

[This story was originally posted on our sister site, Kings County Politics.]

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