The Real Deal New York

City seeks developer to convert Bronx jail to affordable housing

Former home of Spofford Youth Detention Center offers 207K sf
June 25, 2015 02:15PM

The New York City Economic Development Corp. is seeking proposals for conversion of the former Spofford Youth Detention Center, a shuttered Bronx juvenile jail with a rough reputation.

Officials have said an ideal proposal would combine affordable housing and opportunities for jobs in the community, DNAinfo reported. The detention center has been closed since 2011.

The site is located in the Hunts Point neighborhood on about 207,000 square feet of land.

“For years, the Hunts Point community has sought a vibrant, progressive use for the Spofford Campus,” said NYCEDC Interim President Kim Vaccari, “and we look forward to examining proposals that advance the Mayor’s affordable housing goals and create new live/work opportunities in the Bronx.”

Proposals must also include a way to relocate or redevelop an existing Head Start program that is located on the premises.

The city has said that anyone is welcome to submit a proposal by October. The site could be used for anything from manufacturing to a cultural facility.

Spofford gained its bad reputation after a 2004 report revealed that inmates were served food infested with roaches and both physically and verbally harassed by staff.

Development in the Bronx has been booming this year, with over 1 million square feet of new space indicated in permit applications so far this year. [DNAinfo] — Tess Hofmann