New York-based developers Jonathan Rose Cos., L+M Development Partners, and Acacia Network have secured $223 million in financing for the first phase of a large, sustainable mixed-use community in East Harlem.
Once completed, Sendero Verde across all phases will include nearly 700 units of affordable housing, community and social service space, a school, open space, community gardens, and retail. Designed by Handel Architects, it is slated to be the nation’s largest development to meet Passive House standards and expected to use 60% to 70% less energy than a similar building. Features include airtight construction, triple-gazed windows, mechanically ventilated space with energy recovery, and individually heated and cooled units.
For the $223 million first phase, the development partners are financing it with construction loans from the New York City Housing Development Corp. and the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development. In addition, New York City Council has provided Resolution A funding, and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has provided grant funding. The first phase also is funded through a letter of credit and federal low-income housing, solar investment, and New York State Brownfield tax credit equity through Bank of America Merrill Lynch.
Construction on the first phase is starting soon and expected to be completed in 2022. Phase one will include 360 units of affordable housing and a superintendent’s unit, space for a school with a full gymnasium, space for nonprofit Union Settlement Association, and an 18,000-square-foot courtyard with a children’s play area, exercise equipment, a seating area, and a stage for community events. Community garden groups that had previously been on the vacant site will be relocated in the development.
Of the 360 units, 30% will serve extremely low-income households, including formerly homeless individuals. Another 20% of units will serve households earning 50% or less of the area median income (AMI). The remainder will be for households at 60%, 80%, and 90% of the AMI.
“Sendero Verde really shows what can be accomplished when government and committed private-sector partners collaborate to create not just critically needed affordable housing for a range of incomes, including the formerly homeless, but also high-quality open space, social and health-care services rooted in the community, and construction that sets a new national standard for green building,” said Ron Moelis, CEO and founding partner of L+M Development Partners. “We hope this project will be a true asset for both current East Harlem residents and those who will soon call Sendero Verde home.”
As a key part of the East Harlem neighborhood for over six decades, Acacia Network’s affiliate PROMESA will provide services for the formerly homeless tenants and will have a robust on-site social services program. The development will include 2,700 square feet of space for PROEMSA, including offices, a medical exam room, and a conference room.
The second phase will include approximately 350 affordable housing units serving a variety of income tiers.