A low-income senior housing and church development planned for Soundview recently received $1.5 million in funding, though the construction start date is up in the air.
The 1810 Randall Ave. project is spearheaded by a church on the project site called Casa de la Fe, and Vertical Community Development Group LLC. As part of the project, developers will rebuild the church and bring community space and housing to the area.
The 8-story building is slated to have about 167 affordable studio and one-bedroom apartments for seniors with incomes ranging from 0% to 50% of the area median income, including formerly homeless seniors. Residents will use federal vouchers to help pay rent.
Councilmember Amanda Farías, a Parkchester Progressive, has allocated $1.5 million to support the project, which she presented after the Sunday service at Casa De La Fe this week.
“I grew up in an intergenerational home, and my grandparents helped my mom take care of me, and I helped my mom take care of my grandparents,” Farías said in a statement. “My abuelos did everything they could to raise us here in the neighborhood, but it was so hard for them to age in place with dignity. … We all have a responsibility to help one another through this major housing crisis, and ensuring that seniors have affordable options like 1810 Randall is a major component in that.”
Along with the City Council allocation, the developers expect to finance the project with the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s (HPD) Senior Affordable Rental Apartments program, as well as low income housing tax credits, according to project spokesperson Jordan Press, of Constantinople & Vallone Consulting.
The developers are currently waiting for HPD to finance the project, which they hope will be sometime next year, according to Press. Once financing is approved, construction will take about two years.
A rezoning requested by the church and development company was approved by the City Council in August without a veto from Mayor Eric Adams. Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson had also given a positive recommendation for the rezoning.
Community Board 9 also recommended the application, under the conditions that the development team collaborates with United Hispanic Construction Workers, Buildings Skills NYC and trade unions to ensure the construction workforce preference is given to local zip codes; that the local school is included in community programming; that the building service jobs pay union standard wages and benefits; that developers collaborate with the Minority Women Contractors and Developments Association; and that the building has appropriate lighting and security cameras in common spaces and outside the building in addition to 24-hour security.
The developers committed to the board’s conditions, Press said.
Also part of the new Casa de la Fe, the church will manage a multifunctional community space equipped with a kitchen, and plans to have programming for youth and seniors, such as classes and meals.
The development will also have recreation space for seniors and 16 ground-floor parking spaces.
A not-for-profit service provider will also help seniors living in the building access services like keeping medical appointments and accessing transportation, according to Press.
“Vertical Community Development is thrilled to be working with Casa de la Fe Church to bring 167 new affordable homes for seniors to Soundview,” Leon Hovsepian, vice president for acquisition and development of Vertical Community Development, said in a statement. “Just as importantly, the Church will have a new home to worship in and serve the community as they have done for so many years. We look forward to completing our financing with the City of New York and getting shovels in the ground.”
Reach Aliya Schneider at [email protected] or (718) 260-4597. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes