New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas today announced the opening of a $15 million scattered-site project that renovated 15 abandoned properties to create 45 new affordable apartments in a four-block area of Newburgh’s East End. Called East End Apartments, the development is helping to revitalize this historic neighborhood while preserving its character.
Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “East End Apartments has taken abandoned properties and brought them back to life as affordable homes for dozens of residents that will breathe new energy into Newburgh’s historic East End neighborhood. With supportive services for homeless youth and veterans, and apartments and space set aside for artists, East End apartments will continue to move Newburgh forward while strengthening the safety net for all of its residents.”
East End Apartments were rehabilitated by Kingston-based developer RUPCO, which is maintaining ownership with Safe Harbors of the Hudson serving as property manager. Among the development’s 45 homes are seven apartments set aside for homeless youth ages 18 to 25 and homeless veterans. Bridges of New York will coordinate their support services. Another 12 apartments will be targeted to tenants involved in artistic or literary endeavors.
Kevin O’Connor, Chief Executive Officer, RUPCO, said, “We are thrilled to be a part of the core revitalization that is going on in Newburgh that involves the public, private and non-profit sectors. Newburgh is on the rise and our contribution that is restoring the fabric of this historic district and providing housing to stem the tide of gentrification is crucial. We value our partnership with HCR and many local entities that makes this work possible.”
The homes were preserved with sensitivity to the historic character of the neighborhood. All fifteen properties will meet NYS’s EnergyStar for Homes energy efficient standards and will receive a LEED for Homes designation.
The 15 renovated buildings include homes located on Lander, South Miller, First, Johnston and DuBois Streets. The neighborhood is immediately adjacent to the City of Newburgh’s Broadway business and government corridor. The neighborhood is also next to SUNY Orange’s Newburgh Campus and Mount Saint Mary College, as well as the regional St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital.
The multi-site development also includes 3,000 square feet of community space known as “The Hub.” This multi-purpose area at 39B Johnston Street will host a community policing sub-station, studio/gallery space for artists, and meeting space for after-school activities. The Hub is dedicated in honor of former City of Newburgh Mayor Judy Kennedy.
New York State Homes and Community Renewal provided federal low income housing credits that generated $9.9 million in equity. The NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation provided federal and state historic tax credits, and the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance are providing funding for the support services and rental subsidy through the Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative. Orange County provided $320,000 in HOME funds. The City of Newburgh provided $140,000. Additional financing partners include Community Preservation Corporation, Raymond James, and Sterling National Bank.
Coppola Associates and the general contractor is Affordable Housing Concepts. The 15 renovated properties were previously owned by the Newburgh Community Land Bank.
NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Samuel D. Roberts said, “We are pleased to be playing a role in this project, ensuring veterans and youth experiencing homelessness not only have a place to live, but access to the services necessary to help them remain stably housed. This project has the added bonus of helping to revitalize a historic neighborhood which will benefit so many other Newburgh residents.”
Daniel Mackay, Deputy Commissioner, NYS Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, said, “Historic Tax Credits help to restore the assets from the past to create a pathway to the future. The investment in Newburgh is extraordinary and has created a new model to rethink how we reknit the fabric of New York’s historic communities.”
Senator Bill Larkin said, “This public private partnership will greatly build on the community development efforts taking place in the City of Newburgh. I was proud to support this collaborative effort which creates an adaptive re-use for abandoned properties, while working to promote economic development that has the potential to lower the tax burden for residents and businesses. The State, the City of Newburgh and local stakeholders must continue to work together on these types of projects moving forward.”
Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus said, “This important revitalization project will reinvigorate this historic Newburgh neighborhood. It serves as an example of what is possible when Government and the private sector work together to benefit our community. I’m excited that our residents will be able to call the East End Apartments home.”
Darryl Seavey, VP Director of Acquisitions Northeast Region for Raymond James Tax Credit Funds, Inc. said, “Raymond James is thrilled to have once again partnered with RUPCO for their Newburgh CORe Neighborhood Revitalization project. Kevin O’Conner and the team at RUPCO have managed to bring new life and vitality to a blighted neighborhood by significantly upgrading and modernizing its existing housing stock while at the same time preserving residential structures that are historically important to the City of Newburgh. This project adheres to RUPCO’s core philosophy of creating homes, supporting people and improving communities. We congratulate RUPCO on furthering their mission with another successful project. We would especially like to thank Sterling National Bank and CPC whom worked with Raymond James on the project financing and equity and have once again been terrific partners.”
Madeline Fletcher, Executive Director, Newburgh Community Land Bank, said, “This project has not only helped to stabilize a high vacancy neighborhood, but has raised the standard of what’s possible at the intersection of historic preservation and local housing needs. It has paved the way for new creative and equitable opportunities for homeownership, placemaking and neighborhood revitalization.”
Karen Milazzo, State Executive Director, Bridges of New York, said, “Having the opportunity to work with Special Populations continues to prove to be an amazing experience for Bridges of New York. The young adults who have been placed into these homes are now provided with the opportunity to not only stabilize in their lives, but with the assistance and encouragement of the case manager, they can now take on new and exciting challenges that they would not have realized on their own. Learning to be responsible, productive adults, raising young children in a safe environment, and living with gratitude are wonderful life experiences they now share. Our veterans value the support they receive in the Newburgh community and are proud to be a part of this new and vital neighborhood. We are grateful to be a part of these revitalizing efforts and will continue to place our best efforts to bring new life and energy into the Newburgh neighborhoods.”
Lisa Silverstone, Executive Director, Safe Harbors of the Hudson, said, “The East End Apartments have breathed new life into our downtown neighborhoods, lovingly restoring historic buildings to create beautiful housing for our neighbors and vibrancy on our streets. Safe Harbors of the Hudson is thrilled to be providing the management for this critical redevelopment project!”
K. James Dittbrenner, Senior Vice-President & Managing Director, Sterling National Bank, said, “Newburgh, the once ‘All American City’ deserves its Renaissance. The RUPCO- Newburgh Revitalization East End project is a substantial part of growing success toward Newburgh’s Renaissance and Sterling National Bank is proud to have supported this amazing rehabilitation project.”