Help for elderly and disabled tenants at Borinquen Court

Federal help is underway for independent seniors and disabled tenants at a Mott Haven housing complex.

Officials with the U.S. Housing and Urban Development secured a total of $300,000 in tenant services at Borinquen Court, a seven-story building housing seniors and those with severe disabilities. Tenants there get federally-funded Section 8 housing to cover their rent.

“We’re getting older as a nation,” said Mirza Orriols, HUD’s Deputy Regional Administrator. “These grants go a long way toward ensuring these vulnerable populations are well served and allowed to age in place.”

Much of the funding is intended to hire a multi-family housing service coordinator who will provide health care, meals and other services for the 145-unit apartment building. The grants are doled out to eligible owners of private housing developments like Borinquen Court, currently managed since 2011 by West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing Inc.

Prior to taking over, the building suffered a multitude of problems. The tenants association brought in WSFSSH, who invested millions to turn things around. They upgraded its heating plant through grants from the state Weatherization Assistance Program. By next year the building will have amenities including new kitchens and a renovated community space.

A recent study by HUD shows property managers are thrilled to see services for the elderly crop up in senior-dominated housing.

“Service coordination programs help to promote independent living, improve residents’ quality of life, and ultimately save taxpayer dollars,” read the report’s brief summary.

Funding will be spread out over the next three years.

David Cruz can be reach via e-mail at or by phone at (718) 742-3383

More from Around NYC