The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) formally announced on Friday, Dec. 5, the selection of Camber Property Group, Henge Development, and SAA | EVI Development as the development team to deliver comprehensive building and apartment upgrades for nearly 4,800 residents and more than 2,000 apartments at Edenwald Houses in the Bronx.
The selected partners will further engage with residents and continue to refine their plans for renovations over the next 12-18 months, with construction expected to begin in 2023. The NYCHA’s community planning process for the Permanent Affordability Commitment Together (PACT) program incorporated a resident review committee, which interviewed prospective development teams about the proposed building upgrades, management practices, sustainability and design features, and plans to enhance social services. The selection of the PACT partners is an important step in the Authority’s commitment to meaningfully improve living conditions for NYCHA residents.
“The selection of this development team, and the process used for that selection, highlight the important changes NYCHA continues to make to improve the PACT program in partnership with its residents,” said Vicki Been, deputy mayor for Housing and Economic Development. “The robust resident engagement and inclusion of both minority-led and minority women-led firms are further evidence of the benefits PACT can bring to NYCHA’s residents and the City at large.”
Established in 1953, Edenwald Houses is one of the oldest and largest public housing developments in the Authority’s portfolio, encompassing 40 residential buildings and more than 48 acres. The proposed rehabilitation scope will address the 20-year capital needs of the property while prioritizing resident preferences and investments towards healthy and efficient buildings within a resilient campus. The extensive modernization of the property will include improvements to the building envelopes, mechanical systems, and apartments while addressing resident priorities, such as a fully renovated senior center, laundry facilities, improved waste management, and exterior site improvements. The PACT team will also analyze the feasibility of increasing energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions in response to the NYCHA Sustainability Agenda and City mandates.
“In addition to the major repairs that will be coming to our development through this partnership, we’re looking forward to the reopening of our senior center which has been closed for several years,” said Edenwald Houses Tenant Association President Walter McNeill. “We’re also looking forward to the reopening of our laundry rooms, continuing with the resident watch program and increasing the capacity of our compactor yard.”
Over the last year, NYCHA briefed hundreds of Edenwald residents on the PACT program, the RFEI selection process, and how the Authority identifies partners best positioned to address areas of need. From there, a resident review committee was convened to work with the Authority to vet submitted proposals, assess their feasibility, and interview the development teams directly. The review committee’s perspective was invaluable in understanding resident needs and preferences across key issues such as priorities for repairs and investments, safety measures, and how to best activate public spaces, among other topics.
“NYCHA residents and stakeholders have seen firsthand how PACT improvements are helping to rehabilitate NYCHA developments, maintain tenant protections, and preserve affordable housing,” said NYCHA Chairman and CEO Greg Russ. “Engaging residents around the changes and improvements they’d like to see in their communities is an essential part of this process – and we look forward to centering their voices in the latest iteration of this vital program.”
The PACT program has generated more than $1.7 billion in comprehensive apartment renovations and building infrastructure improvements to date for more than 9,500 households, with $1.2 billion in major upgrades underway and approximately $579 million in renovations that have already been completed. An additional 25,600 households are part of active development projects in the process of resident engagement or pre-development. In sum, NYCHA has more than 35,000 units completed, in construction, or in a stage of resident engagement or pre-development.