ALBANY, N.Y. – The Albany Housing Authority (AHA) announces that Phase One of the redevelopment project at the 129-unit Ida Yarbrough low-rise residential homes is underway. The first phase of construction includes 61 townhomes and garden apartments for families with incomes below 50 percent of Area Median Income (AMI). Construction began in July and is expected to be completed by November of next year. In future phases, the remaining site will be cleared for development of for-sale homes, a new community center and a mixed-income mid-rise building on the North Pearl Street corridor.
The closing on this property and the beginning of construction represent major milestones in a four year process to redevelop the homes at 270 North Pearl Street in Albany’s Arbor Hill neighborhood. The redevelopment is made possible through a decade of implementing the Arbor Hill Neighborhood Plan, which is focused on improving the housing, economic, cultural, and quality of life issues affecting the community.
AHA is proud to act as the sole developer of this project with several partnering organizations lending essential assistance. These include the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, New York State Homes and Community Renewal (which awarded AHA $5.5 million for the development), New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the City of Albany, the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, the Affordable Housing Partnership, and the Center for Disability Services. Stratford Capital Group arranged the sale of the tax credits and Citizens Bank is the construction lender. The design for Phase One of this project was created by Dave Sadowsky, architect. AOW Associates is providing general construction services.
“This project encountered many obstacles on the way to approval and the start of construction. Without persistence and the support of our great partners, we wouldn’t be where we are today with this redevelopment,” said Steven T. Longo, executive director, Albany Housing Authority. “There’s a clear need for affordable housing in Albany and our partners stuck with us through the lengthy process of seeing this project through to fruition. We thank them for sticking with us to make sure the need for affordable housing in this city is met.”
“The Albany Housing Authority, under the leadership of Steven Longo, continues to invest in large redevelopment projects that benefit our entire city,” said Kathy M. Sheehan, mayor, City of Albany. “The Housing Authority is committed to meeting the needs of our low income families and the new construction at the Ida Yarbrough Homes is more evidence of that. We congratulate them on this important milestone in the Ida Yarbrough project.”
AHA and the City of Albany have made large contributions in terms of capital and operating subsidies to the project and reduced costs by abating and demolishing all pre-existing buildings. The space has been reutilized efficiently to add more units to the property while also allowing for more green space. Through these efforts, the project received additional funding from NYS Environmental Facilities Corporation’s Green Initiatives Grant Program.
The project incorporates state-of-the-art, sustainable features with highly energy-efficient heating systems, green vegetated roofs, enhanced storm water management, accommodations for solar collectors, LED lighting, and water saving appliances and fixtures all contributing to reduced utility costs for residents. Enhanced accessibility measures to serve residents of all ages and physical capabilities have been built into the design of the units that are at once more attractive, energy-efficient, accessible, and cost effective to build.
“The redevelopment of the outdated Ida Yarbrough into safe, energy-efficient homes will benefit Albany families and the entire city,” said James S. Rubin, commissioner, New York State Homes and Community Renewal. “This investment joins developments like Sheridan Hollow Village that replace blight with attractive, quality housing and improves the lives of Albany families.”
“We are very pleased to be part of the Ida Yarbrough redevelopment project and to be able to help the Albany Housing Authority team achieve its strategic and financial goals,” said Paul Taffe, president, Citizens Bank of New York. “Citizens Bank is committed to supporting affordable housing and strengthening communities, so this is a very important project for us.”
“Stratford Capital was pleased to partner with the Albany Housing Authority to make this development possible,” said Miles Hapgood, senior vice president, Stratford Capital Group. “We value our relationship with the Housing Authority and are very happy that the result of our collective efforts will be an additional 61 units of affordable housing.”
About the Albany Housing Authority:
Since its creation in 1948, the Albany Housing Authority has evolved to provide leadership in meeting the needs and aspirations of its residents and their communities. More than just housing, today the Authority offers families a foundation from which to build successful lives, inspiring investment in self and community through quality rental, homeownership, employment and small business opportunities. We are able to partner for those who wish to transform their future, and that of their community, into one of choice. Visit us at www.albanyhousing.org.