58-Unit Affordable Housing Project Opens in South Bronx

By Anuradha Kher, Online News EditorBronx, N.Y.–Banana Kelly Place, a newly constructed affordable housing complex located at 830 Fox St. in the Longwood neighborhood of the south Bronx in New York City, is now open.   Named after the South Bronx-based community group, Banana Kelly, the development features 58 low-income rental units and 5,200 sq. ft. of ground floor space for a future childcare facility.It is developed by CPC Resources, the for-profit development arm of The Community Preservation Corporation (CPC), and Banana Kelly Community Improvement Association, with city subsidies from Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) and Housing Development Corp. (HDC).  The $14 million project features a new seven-story building comprising 18 one-bedroom units, 39 two-bedroom units and one superintendent unit. Before Banana Kelly Place was built, the site was abandoned for over 20 years. “We can be proud of the steps we have taken to reclaim and rejuvenate our city’s neighborhoods,” says Michael Lappin, president and CEO of CPC and CPCR. Harry DeRienzo, president, Banana Kelly Community Improvement Association, says, “We understand how imperative it is to build quality affordable housing in this area. We look forward to continuing our work of turning around the South Bronx for both current and future generations.” All apartments are available to families earning no more than 60 percent of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) income limits. Under these limits, an individual earning no more than $28,350 and a family of four earning no more than $45,540 is eligible to live in Banana Kelly Place. Additionally, 18 of the units have been reserved for formerly homeless families who will be provided with Section 8 existing certificates or vouchers. Rents range from $585 for a one-bedroom unit to $867 for a two-bedroom unit.“Just last week in the south Bronx, HPD and Mayor Bloomberg celebrated the funding of more than half of the mayor’s pledge to preserve and create 165,000 units of affordable housing,” says HPD Commissioner Shaun Donovan. “More than 27,000 units are either completed or in development right here in the Bronx.”The development was financed using $10.7 million of HDC’s tax-exempt bonds and accompanying subsidies available through the city’s Low-income Affordable Housing Marketplace Program, known as LAMP, as well as federal low income housing credits. The development also received a $1.7 million subsidy through HPD’s Mixed Income Rental Program (MIRP). CPC Resources lent its broad expertise in affordable housing development and oversaw all aspects of the development and construction of the project. During construction, the bonds were backed by a letter of credit from Chase Community Development Banking. A $5.3 million tax credit equity was syndicated through WNC & Associates Inc.