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Homes and Community Renewal

City And State Officials Joined Lantern And Partners To Announce The Grand Opening Of New Affordable Housing For Formerly Homeless New Yorkers Including Veterans

Partnership between the City and Lantern builds on the commitment to help end veteran homelessness in New York City.

New York, NY – The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR), and New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito joined Lantern and partners to celebrate the ribbon-cutting ceremony for Prospero Hall in the East Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan. The 87 affordable apartments provide permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless New Yorkers, with a preference for formerly homeless veterans who may not be eligible for housing or services funded through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

“Homes and Community Renewal’s proud participation in the Prospero Hall project exemplifies Governor Andrew Cuomo’s leadership in making more housing opportunities available to New Yorkers who need them most,” said Darryl C. Towns, Commissioner/CEO of NYS Homes and Community Renewal (HCR).  “Residents will enjoy an enhanced quality of life in a supportive setting that serves to strengthen and revitalize the broader community as well.”

“The City is committed to providing accessible affordable housing to the most vulnerable New Yorkers. We recognize that a safe and secure home provides an essential foundation which is necessary to achieve independence and self-sufficiency,” said HPD Commissioner Vicki Been. “I would like to thank our partners in New York State and New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito for supporting this development. I would also like to thank Lantern and all the development partners for making this development possible. Because of your commitment, 87 formerly homeless individuals will have the opportunity to gain the firm footing needed to build a promising future.”

“We are very proud to open Lantern’s fifteenth affordable building in New York City which will provide both housing and critical social services to some of our City’s most vulnerable citizens,” said Laura Lazarus, Executive Director of Lantern. “We are incredibly grateful to our many government, private-sector, and non-profit partners for helping to make this building and the services we provide possible. We look forward to helping formerly homeless men and women make their homes and build healthy stable lives at Prospero Hall.”

Comprehensive supportive services provided by Lantern at Prospero Hall are delivered by a team of Social Workers and Program Specialists dedicated to helping clients improve their physical and mental health, reinstate themselves into the community and job market, and advance towards their individualized goals while also achieving housing stability.  Lantern is in the vanguard of bringing evidence-based social service models to the field of permanent supportive housing.  These are the foundation for all of its programming which encompasses supported employment and high school equivalency degree classes; individual counseling; community referrals; health and wellness programs; nutrition education and food service; and arts and culture.

Prospero Hall is a fully handicap adaptable building that includes six handicapped accessible apartments. On-site amenities include laundry facilities, community common space, cable/internet readiness and 24-hour security. The adjacent community garden – The Magic Garden - has also been preserved for the enjoyment of the entire neighborhood.

All apartments in the building will serve extremely low- and low-income individuals earning no more than $34,860 annually. All tenants will pay only 30% of their income toward rent. A grand total of 54 apartments are set aside for homeless households including those living with serious and persistent mental illness. Priority has been given to chronically homeless veterans. These apartments are to be filled via New York City Department of Homeless Services referrals. Income levels are calculated annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The incomes for this development were set according to HUD’s 2012 calculations.

The total development cost for Prospero Hall is approximately $19.2 million.  HPD provided $10.7 million in HOME Funds and $125,000 in permanent financing. The project was constructed on formerly HPD-owned land. HCR provided Low-Income Housing Tax Credits which resulted in tax credit equity in the amount of $8.3 million toward permanent financing. The Richman Group is the tax credit investor. An additional $550,000 in predevelopment funding was provided by the Richman Group, the Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH) and the Contact Fund. The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) will provide essential operating support for Lantern’s supportive services program at Prospero Hall.
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About New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR):
New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) consists of all the State's major housing and community renewal agencies, including the Affordable Housing Corporation, the Division of Housing and Community Renewal, the Housing Finance Agency, State of New York Mortgage Agency, Housing Trust Fund Corporation and others. In 2014, HCR set an agency record by financing the creation or preservation of 9,363 affordable housing units, including affordable homeownership opportunities for more than one thousand families. 2015 marks the third year of Governor Cuomo’s $1 billion statewide House NY program, whose goal is to create or preserve 14,300 affordable units by 2018. As the largest investment in New York State’s affordable housing stock in at least 15 years, House NY investments will keep thousands of low- and moderate-income Mitchell-Lama units affordable for another 40 years. The House NY initiative works in tandem with HCR’s unprecedented efforts to protect more than two million rent-regulated tenants, with the greatest strengthening of the state’s rent laws in 30 years, and the creation of HCR’s Tenant Protection Unit which proactively audits and investigates landlord wrongdoing and has returned 39,000 units to rent regulation.

About the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD):
HPD is the nation’s largest municipal housing preservation and development agency. Its mission is to promote quality housing and viable neighborhoods for New Yorkers through education, outreach, loan and development programs, and enforcement of housing quality standards. HPD is tasked with fulfilling Mayor de Blasio’s Housing New York: A Five-Borough Ten-Year Plan to build 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 Lantern:
Lantern advances the independence and well-being of individuals and families impacted by homelessness. Lantern’s housing initiatives are a model for innovative development of permanent and affordable supportive housing.  As a leader in the field, Lantern is often among the first to identify solutions for creating permanent housing options for special needs and low income populations, including families and single adults with HIV, mental illness, or other special needs and young adults aging out of foster care. To date, Lantern has developed 15 buildings around New York City which include more than 1,400 apartment units. We provide comprehensive, proven services to more than 2,000 vulnerable New Yorkers annually.  For more information see www.lanterngroup.org.

 

 

Last Updated: 05/06/13