Johnson Park Green Community Apartments is expected to receive certificates of occupancy in May 2024.
SWBR Johnson Park Green Community Apartments is expected to receive certificates of occupancy in May 2024.

Construction is underway on 62 affordable and supportive housing units in Utica, New York.

Johnson Park Green Community Apartments will consist of a three-story building with 51 one-bedroom apartments and 11 two-and three-bedroom apartments in duplex-style buildings. All will be affordable to households earning at or below 30% of the area median income.

Thirty-one apartments with supportive services will be available for frail elderly households and individuals who have been homeless with a serious mental illness diagnosis. Supportive services will be provided by Johnson Park Center, with operating funding being provided through the Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative and the state Department of Health.

Rockabilll Development and Johnson Park Center are partnering on the $28 million project.

Designed to meet passive house standards capable of reducing energy consumption by up to 80%, Johnson Park Green Community Apartments will serve as a model for high-performance multifamily housing and is part of a comprehensive better buildings strategy aimed at protecting vulnerable residents from the challenges of climate change, according to the developers.

The energy-efficient features include a solar photovoltaic system capable of meeting 100% of the development’s energy demand, with a goal of net-zero emissions.

“The project’s rigorous focus on energy use and performance will help protect vulnerable residents during climate emergencies, and proves it is possible to build deeply affordable and supportive housing that is green, cost-effective, and replicable,” said Niall J. Murray, president and CEO of Rockabill Development.

The development will include a 12,000-square-foot community center operated by Johnson Park Center to house a food pantry and provide classroom space for both residents and the surrounding community.

Financing for Johnson Park Green Community Apartments includes $15 million in low-income housing and solar tax credit equity and $3 million in subsidy from New York State Homes and Community Renewal. The New York State Office of Temporary Disability Assistance will provide $5.6 million through its Homeless Housing and Assistance Program. New York State Energy Research and Development Authority is providing $1.2 million in incentives through its Buildings of Excellence and New Construction Housing programs. The city of Utica is providing $1.5 million in subsidy. JPMorgan Chase provided a $16 million construction loan from Chase Community Development Banking. Hudson Housing Capital, the tax credit syndicator, and the tax-oriented investments unit of JPMorgan Chase invested over $14.8 million in tax credit equity. The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties contributed $250,000.