Adams Launches Program to Create 1,500 Permanent Affordable Homes for New Yorkers in Shelter

Adams Launches Program to Create 1,500 Permanent Affordable Homes for New Yorkers in Shelter

By Forum Staff

Mayor Eric Adams and New York City Department of Social Services (DSS) Commissioner Molly Wasow Park on Thursday launched the Affordable Housing Services (AHS) initiative — a new effort that, according to the administration, will create 1,500 permanent affordable homes for New Yorkers in the shelter system with City Fighting Homelessness and Eviction Prevention Supplement (CityFHEPS) vouchers. Through an emergency declaration issued today, DSS will fast-track 1,000 of those units

With 10,600 households with CityFHEPS vouchers currently in the City’s shelter system unable to find housing due to the city’s severe housing shortage, the program will create a much-needed and scalable pathway out of shelter. Through the Affordable Housing Services program, the city will help nonprofits purchase or enter long-term, building-wide leases on affordable housing sites — locking in long-term affordability with strong tenant protections for CityFHEPS voucher holders.

The emergency declaration issued today will allow DSS to fast-track the creation of 1,000 units of affordable housing by cutting down time required to register contracts with non-profit providers, ultimately allowing providers to quickly move voucher holders into affordable units that are ready for immediate occupancy. The 1,000 fast-tracked units will all use the AHS long-term leasing model and take advantage of new-to-market buildings and existing housing stock ready for clients to move into. The additional 500 units in the AHS pipeline will be acquired by non-profit providers.

In total, the city’s pipeline for the program will create 1,500 units of subsidized housing for households with CityFHEPS vouchers. DSS has already finalized contracts with various nonprofit providers to create subsidized housing for nearly 700 households in shelter that are eligible for CityFHEPS vouchers. More than 150 households have already been placed in permanent housing made available through the program in 2023. The program also includes the first-of-its-kind project, done in partnership with Riseboro Community Partnership, to convert the former JFK Hilton Hotel to affordable housing.

“Time and time again, our administration has taken action to help New Yorkers in our shelter system move into permanent affordable homes, and our strategies have proven effective,” Adams said. “As 10,000 households eligible for CityFHEPS are currently living in shelters, the Affordable Housing Services initiative will create over 1,500 much-needed permanent affordable homes for New Yorkers experiencing homelessness. And as we act now to connect New Yorkers to the homes they need, we will continue to advance our historic ‘City of Yes’ proposal to build housing in every neighborhood and advocate for Albany to truly meet the need.”

DSS Commissioner Wasow Park added, “After taking significant steps to expand access to city-funded rental assistance for households in shelter, we are pursuing bold housing solutions and leveraging social service dollars to create critical permanent housing opportunities for them. The emergency use of the Affordable Housing Services initiative will fast-track connections to deeply affordable housing for 1,000 households in shelter while positioning them for long-term stability. This initiative will also be instrumental in helping build on the vital progress we’ve made increasing permanent housing placements from shelter last year. We are also grateful for Comptroller [Brad] Lander’s partnership in this critical effort as we work collaboratively to realize new and innovative ways to deliver for some of our most vulnerable New Yorkers.”


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