|HUD No. 12-92
Adam Glantz (212) 264-1100
Olga Alvarez (212) 542-7142
October 11, 2012
YONKERS RECEIVES $300,000 TO SPUR NEXT GENERATION OF HOUSING, NEIGHBORHOOD TRANSFORMATION
17 entities nationwide receive grants to execute grassroots efforts to revitalize housing, communities
NEW YORK - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today that the City of Yonkers will receive $300,000 to execute grassroots efforts to revitalize the public housing at Cottage Place Gardens and transform the Croton Heights neighborhood. (See below for additional information.) In New York State, New York City was also a grant recipient.
Yonkers is one of 17 entities from across the U.S. receiving a Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grant today. The funding provides these communities the resources they need to craft comprehensive, community-driven plans to revitalize public or other HUD-assisted housing and transform distressed neighborhoods.
"This funding will enable the City of Yonkers to take its initial discussions with local partners further to plan out strategies to build a stronger, more sustainable community that will address distressed housing, failing schools, rampant crime in this housing and community," said Mirza Orriols, Deputy Regional Administrator. "HUD's Choice Neighborhoods Initiative represents the next generation in a movement toward revitalizing entire neighborhoods to improve the lives of the residents who live there."
"Investing in the redevelopment of Cottage Place Gardens will help ensure that the Croton Heights neighborhood and the City of Yonkers are strong and ready for continued revitalization in the future," said Senator Schumer. "With this federal investment, the City of Yonkers will be empowered to transform distressed neighborhoods so that the community is safe and secure for local residents."
HUD's Choice Neighborhoods Initiative promotes a comprehensive approach to transforming distressed areas of concentrated poverty into viable and sustainable mixed-income neighborhoods. Building on the successes of HUD's HOPE VI Program, Choice Neighborhoods links housing improvements with necessary services for the people who live there - including schools, public transit and employment opportunities.
The awardees announced today were selected from among 72 applications. Successful applicants demonstrated their intent to plan for the transformation of neighborhoods by revitalizing severely distressed public and/or assisted housing while leveraging investments to create high-quality public schools, outstanding education and early learning programs, public assets, public transportation, and improved access to jobs and well-functioning services. HUD focused on directing resources to address three core goals:
- Housing: Transform distressed public and assisted housing into energy efficient, mixed-income housing that is physically and financially viable over the long-term;
- People: Support positive outcomes for families who live in the target development(s) and the surrounding neighborhood, particularly outcomes related to residents' health, safety, employment, mobility, and education; and
- Neighborhood: Transform neighborhoods of poverty into viable, mixed-income neighborhoods with access to well-functioning services, high quality public schools and education programs, high quality early learning programs and services, public assets, public transportation, and improved access to jobs.
The grantees will use the funding to work with local stakeholders - public and/or assisted housing residents, community members, businesses, institutions and local government officials - to undertake a successful neighborhood transformation to create a "choice neighborhood." The awardees will use the funding to create a comprehensive Transformation Plan, or road map, to transforming distressed public and/or assisted housing within a distressed community.
Choice Neighborhoods is one of the signature programs of the White House Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative, which supports innovative, holistic strategies that bring public and private partners together to help break the cycle of intergenerational poverty. Choice Neighborhoods encourages collaboration between HUD and the Departments of Education, Justice, Treasury and Health and Human Services to support local solutions for sustainable, mixed-income neighborhoods with the affordable housing, safe streets and good schools all families need.
Congress approved the Choice Neighborhoods Initiative with the passage of HUD's FY2010 budget. Funding is provided through two separate programs - Implementation Grants and Planning Grants. With this announcement, HUD has awarded a total of $12.55 million in Planning Grants to 46 cities or counties. See past Planning grantees list here.
Choice Neighborhoods Implementation grants are awarded to entities that have completed a comprehensive local planning process and are ready to move forward with their Transformation Plan to redevelop their target housing and neighborhoods. In August, HUD announced the nine finalists that will compete for approximately $110 million in 2012 Choice Neighborhoods Implementation grants to transform public and other HUD-assisted housing in targeted neighborhoods. Teams recently completed site visits as part of the application review process to determine which of the finalists will receive Implementation grants.
Last year, HUD awarded its first CN Implementation grants for Chicago, Boston, New Orleans, San Francisco and Seattle, a combined $122.27 million investment to bring comprehensive neighborhood revitalization to blighted areas in these cities.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov. You can also follow HUD on Twitter at @HUDnews or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HUD. or sign up for news alerts on HUD's News Listserv.
FY2012 CHOICE NEIGHBORHOODS PLANNING GRANT AWARD INFORMATION
Choice Neighborhoods Lead Grantee: Municipal Housing Authority for the City of Yonkers
Choice Neighborhoods Co-Grantees: City of Yonkers
Target Public Housing Project: Cottage Place Gardens
Target Neighborhood: Croton Heights
Choice Neighborhoods Grant Amount: $300,000
IMC Consulting, Inc. (Planning Coordinator), The Community Builders, Yonkers Public School System, Yonkers Community Health Center, Community Voices Heard, Yonkers Workforce Investment Board, Andrus Foundation, Charter School for Excellence, Westhab, Family and Supportive Services of Yonkers, Habitat for Humanity, Yonkers Police Athletic League, Groundworks, and Greyston Foundation and Bakery.
Yonkers is infamous for the 1980's desegregation case where the federal court determined that the city of Yonkers intentionally segregated its schools and housing for 40 years. Though the Municipal Housing Authority for the City of Yonkers (MHACY) was not a party to the suit, 97 percent of the City's family public housing units at the time were located in the southwest quadrant of the city, with three of the four public housing sites located in the Croton Heights neighborhood. The city and the MHACY recognized in the late 1990s the need to address the circumstances of the Croton Heights neighborhood, which was at the core of the 1980's desegregation case. Their collaborative efforts have begun to transform the eastern and central sections of Croton Heights by implementing a HOPE VI grant for Mulford Gardens awarded in 2005, one of the other public housing developments in the neighborhood. In Croton Heights the majority of the housing stock is substandard, is over 70 years old, and lacks fire protection and adequate accessibility.
The Transformation Plan for the Croton Heights neighborhood will focus on Cottage Place Gardens and the surrounding area along the major east-west transportation corridor through the neighborhood. The Plan will also seek to promote the revitalization of the assisted housing in the neighborhood, including Dorado Houses (210 units) and Cromwell Towers (209 units). The city and housing authority will create a plan involving a wide range of neighborhood stakeholders to reintroduce neighborhood based-schools, stimulate sustainable employment opportunities, and coordinate community-based healthcare and social service partners. With a well-developed Transformation Plan reliant on strong resident and business participation and engagement, the vision is to offer everyone in Yonkers a quality place to live, learn, play and work, and finally achieve what was envisioned almost 30 years ago when the desegregation case was first brought.