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Homes and Community Renewal

New York State Homes and Community Renewal Announces 72 Homes
For Seniors Moving Forward in Livonia

Wildbriar Estates Breaks Ground while Newly Rehabilitated Westview Hills Officially Re-Opens

$12 Million Investment in Livingston County Complements Finger Lakes Forward, the Region’s
Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy

(Livonia, July 2, 2018) New York State Homes and Community Renewal today announced two affordable rental developments for area seniors are moving forward to create 72 homes in Village of Livonia.  The $10.2 million Wildbriar Estates started construction today to create 48 apartments for people aged 55 and older, and the adjacent $1.8 million rehabilitation of the 30-year-old Westview Hills development officially opened, providing 24 quality, affordable homes to people aged 62 and older.

Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “These two projects will help ensure that more than 125 seniors will have the opportunity to live independently in the community they love. Supporting our seniors is an essential element of Governor Cuomo’s $20 billion housing plan, which is investing in projects like these across the state and right here in Livingston County, where they play an important role in strengthening the economy and keeping the Finger Lakes Region moving forward.”

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s commitment to strengthening communities and growing the Finger Lakes economy is reflected in Finger Lakes Forward, a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative that builds on the more than $5.2 billion the State has injected in the region since 2012. The State’s investment in Wildbriar Estates and Westview Hills complements the Finger Lakes Forward by injecting $12 million into the economy and increasing access to high quality housing for seniors so they can live independently in their community.

Both Wildbriar Estates and Westview Hills are developed by Genesee Valley Rural Preservation Council, Inc. The Wildbriar Estates complex is arranged on a 6.7-acre parcel, accessed by the extension of Wildbriar Drive to the north into the Gateway District. Thirty-two apartments will be in one large building, with an attached community senior center that includes a large common dining room, fitness room, offices and space for various activities and resident services. Three other townhouse buildings will provide homes for 16 households. Interior and exterior space will be handicapped accessible, with a pavilion, walking paths and picnic area. All units will have energy efficient cooling and heating systems.

HCR provided an allocation of federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits for Wildbriar Estates that will generate $6.3 million for the development, and $1.8 million through its HOME program and about $263,000 through its Urban and Rural Community Investment Fund.

The 24-apartment Westview Hills, located just south of Windbriar Estates, was built as a two-story, three-building complex for persons 62 and older in 1988. The upgrade included replacing the old electric baseboard heating with an energy efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning system; new lighting, plumbing and energy efficient windows, repainting and new kitchen cabinets, bathroom vanities, countertops and flooring. New elevators allow full accessibility to both floors of all three buildings.

HCR provided permanent financing though a $960,000 loan from its Urban and Rural Community Investment Fund which leveraged $676,000 from the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York’s Affordable Housing Program.

Since 2011, HCR has built and preserved about 5,100 affordable homes in the Finger Lakes region, investing more than $385.5 million for developments valued at about $958 million. Of that, almost 220 of those homes are in Livingston County, receiving more than $10.5 million of HCR resources for developments valued at about $33.7 million.

Senator Catharine Young said, “For many seniors on fixed incomes, one of the greatest difficulties of their older years can be finding affordable, secure and comfortable housing. Today, the Village of Livonia is celebrating a major step forward in addressing that problem with the groundbreaking of the new Wildbriar Estates and the completed upgrade of Westview Hills. These complexes will address the shortage of affordable apartments for seniors and ensure that those who have worked hard all their lives, raised families and contributed to their communities, have access to the housing they need. My thanks go out to Governor Cuomo and Commissioner Visnauskas for their commitment to affordable housing in rural New York and to the Genesee Valley Rural Preservation Council for bringing these critically needed projects to fruition.”

Genesee Valley Rural Preservation Corporation President Jill A. Alcorn said, “The entire Wildbriar development team is pleased to be able not only to update and preserve an important existing affordable housing complex (Westview Hills), but to be able to provide an additional 48 units of elderly/frail elderly/disabled housing for those community members needing a more supportive living environment – which will be provided by Wildbriar Estates. The availability of the attached Wildbriar Senior Community Center, funded by the HCR Community Investment Fund, will allow for an array of senior/disabled support services, congregate activities and other events that will serve the seniors in Livonia. We particularly thank Governor Cuomo’s entire housing team, Senator Cathy Young, as well as our local elected representatives and the many public and private funding and financing partners for embracing this important housing concept that is so greatly needed in this rural community.”   

Livingston County Board of Supervisors Chairman David LeFeber said, “The Livingston County Board of Supervisors fully supports these projects. We certainly recognize the growing need for senior housing within the county.”

Accelerating Finger Lakes Forward 
Today’s announcement complements “Finger Lakes Forward,” the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $5.2 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan – investing in key industries including photonics, agriculture and food production, and advanced manufacturing. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Rochester, Batavia and Canandaigua as a destination to grow and invest in.

Now, the region is accelerating Finger Lakes Forward with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State’s $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion – and the region’s plan, as submitted, projects up to 8,200 new jobs. More information is available here.