Building affordable housing on Long Island, or any suburb in the United States, is no easy feat. Locals predict dire consequences for the community, single-family zoning predominates and the economics of creating low-rent apartments are daunting.
One project in Nassau County that has managed to break through is from D&F Development Group, which plans to start work next month on an entirely affordable housing complex at 860-906 Fulton Street in Farmingdale, Newsday reported.
Sterling Green at Farmingdale will have 71 units on a site that was zoned for single-family homes until 2019. Financing was pieced together from a number of sources, as is often the case for affordable housing.
The Nassau County Industrial Development Agency recently approved tax breaks for the project, which is expected to cost $38.4 million. The 32-year tax break, which has not been finalized, will allow the developer to make payments in lieu of taxes. Last year, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced $11.9 million of benefits from the state for the project.
The developer hopes to finish by May 2024 and to close on financing next month, according to Newsday.
Twenty-seven units will be reserved for households earning around 50 percent of the area median income, 22 for those making 60 percent of the AMI, two for tenants earning 70 percent of the AMI and 19 for those at 80 percent. The building’s other unit will be for the superintendent.
Tenants will need to qualify for the apartments each year, but existing tenants will be allowed to stay if their income is within 140 percent of the original limit.
Rents will range from $1,150 to $2,245 for the units, which will have one to three bedrooms.
The Long Island Business News reported that the project was proposed nearly three years ago. Amenities will include parking for 128 vehicles, several electric vehicle charging stations, a laundry room, a community garden and a playground area.
As home prices have surged on Long Island during the pandemic, more towns are eyeing affordable housing projects to help residents. Earlier this year, the new mayor of the Village of Hempstead unblocked two projects, which could deliver more than 300 income-restricted units to the area.
A study recently found that affordable housing has no negative impact on surrounding property values.
[Newsday] — Holden Walter-Warner