The city’s public housing authority, NYCHA, is looking for
more private sector developers to help repair thousands of public apartments.
NYCHA has released a new Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) to attract development partners for projects under its Permanent Affordability Commitment Together (PACT) program to repair and preserve more than 5,900 units in the Bronx and Upper Manhattan.
“The applicants selected through this RFEI announcement will
play a crucial role in securing comprehensive capital upgrades to NYCHA
properties in dire need of full-scale infrastructural repairs,” said NYCHA
Chair & CEO Greg Russ. “We look forward to weighing the submitted proposals
for the care and attention they place on delivering meaningful quality-of-life
improvements on behalf of the thousands of residents targeted under this latest
This is the 11th RFEI the Authority has issued since introducing the PACT program when it was revealed years of neglect and mismanagement had left the nation’s biggest public housing provider with an estimated $40 billion repair bill while juggled a budget deficit all under the watch of a federal monitor.
PACT is part of a multi-pronged approach by City Hall to tackle the housing crisis that impacts nearly half-a-million tenants by allowing NYCHA to raise money for repairs through the lease of the land and buildings to private developers.
PACT allows NYCHA to completely renovate developments using
HUD Section 8 conversion programs, including the Rental Assistance
Demonstration program (RAD), Tenant Protection Voucher (TPV) funding, and Part
200 disposition. The New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC), the
local housing finance agency, assembles the financing and provide asset
management and compliance for the PACT transactions.
Through PACT, developments are included in the federal
Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) and convert to Project Based Section 8,
considered a more stable federally funded program.
Once a property is converted to Project-Based Section 8,
NYCHA leases the land and buildings to the development partners, who conduct
the repairs, serve as the new on-site property manager, and provide social
services and community programs. NYCHA continues to own the land and buildings,
administer the Section 8 subsidy and waitlist, and monitor conditions at the
While the process has been plagued by complaints from residents
and criticism from those who consider it a back door to privatization, NYCHA’s
executive vice president of Real Estate Development, Jonathan Gouveia believes any
kinks have been ironed out.
“Over the past year, NYCHA’s Real Estate Development
Department has worked diligently to revise our PACT requirements in a way that
reflects the thoughtful concerns of our residents and stakeholders,” said Gouveia.
“We are confident that our approach will yield a host of high-quality
rehabilitation proposals capable of improving the health, prosperity, and
living conditions of NYCHA residents.”
To date, some 9,500 NYCHA apartments have been moved to the PACT system and are privately managed under RAD. Another 11,800 units are expected to be transferred to the program by year’s end.
NYCHA’s latest RFEI is for pre-qualified partners – those who’ve
already gone through an accreditation process that looks for firms with diverse partnerships, an ability to provide resident
programming and services, green building and resident engagement plans – to repair
and renovate nearly 6,000 apartments in Harlem and The Bronx:
Boston Secor, Boston Road Plaza & Middletown Plaza (952
Jackie Robinson & Harlem Scattered Sites (1,063 units)
Manhattanville (1,272 units)
Murphy Private (850 units)
Northwest Bronx Scattered Sites (1,817 units)
Submitted proposals will be reviewed by resident committees
formed by the Tenant Association leaders to assist NYCHA in the selection of
partners for their respective developments.
One a deal is struck, residents can expect to see their
buildings, common spaces, and apartments modernized through extensive
renovations. According to this newest RFEI, repairs to individual apartments
will include comprehensive work on kitchens, bathrooms, windows, and living
spaces. Chronic heat and gas outages will be addressed and renovations of
interiors and common spaces, as well as elevator repairs, will be completed.
Additionally, there will be improvements to building security, including
upgraded entry systems and additional security cameras. Partnerships with
social service providers have also been established to improve on-site services
and programming through input from residents.
“Modernizing NYCHA is imperative for the well-being and
quality of life of NYCHA residents,” said Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic
Development Vicki Been. “The city welcomes development partners who are
committed to improving living conditions and providing safe, quality housing in
a thriving community that meets the needs of NYCHA tenants.”
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