L+M Development Partners and Hornig Capital Partners have teamed up with SBH Health System to develop 314 units of supportive housing in the Bronx that focuses on preventative health.
The $156 million, 450,000-square-foot project will rise on two development sites at 4451 and 4439 Third Avenue that sit across from the street from the St. Barnabas Hospital, which is part of the SBH Health System.
The project will include services like an ambulatory-care center and a kitchen for teaching healthy cooking habits, and all units will be affordable for low-income or formerly homeless households.
“If you have a safe place to live, if you have good food, then you can start to think about all those other things that relate to wellness,” SBH chief executive David Perlstein told the Wall Street Journal.
The project comes as part of an effort by the state to overhaul its Medicaid system by encouraging developers to come up with cost-effective ways to improve the health of low-income residents and cut back on costly emergency-room visits.
The state’s Homes and Community Renewal kicked in $71.7 million in tax-exempt bonds and $7.5 million in Medicaid Redesign team funds to help finance the development. On the city level, the Housing Preservation and Development Department put up a $36.8-million, low-interest 30-year loan. The Bronx borough president’s office also provided a $1 million loan.
Construction permits have been issued for both sites. Work is expected to be completed in late 2018, and the project will include interior green walls with living plants, paint that breaks down chemical pollutants and a rooftop farm.
The development partners are in talks with the former owner of a local family market to create a café with healthy food in the retail component, where tenants will be prohibited from selling tobacco or alcohol.
The effectiveness of the project remains to be seen, but Perlstein said the community is waiting with anticipation.
“People are waiting to see what happens,” he said. [WSJ] – Rich Bockmann