“Just Home”—a NYC Health + Hospitals (HHC) plan to convert an empty staff residence on the Jacobi Hospital campus into supportive housing for a few dozen people with serious medical problems discharged from Rikers Island—is a pressure cooker for many of the most fraught issues in the city: homelessness, mental health, development, and the risk of crime, whether real or perceived.
The latest version of the Innovation Qns plan features 1,436 income-restricted apartments, around 45 percent of the total. “We have set a new precedent for building affordable housing on private land,” the neighborhood’s Councilmember Julie Won said in prepared remarks ahead of the vote.
In a document issued Monday, Councilmember Jennifer Gutiérrez laid out her priorities for any new development that requires changes to the zoning code in one of the city’s most intense real estate markets. Under the City Council’s informal tradition of member deference, local members have effective veto power over land use applications in their districts.
In Wake of Rezonings, Renewed Call for More Health Facilities on Hospital-Starved Rockaway Peninsula
Residential rezonings, including one approved this summer for Edgemere, are poised to bring thousands of new apartments to the Rockaways over the next decade, but just a single hospital has served the peninsula since 2012. A new task force is being asked to create a roadmap for expanding local healthcare services, including a facility that offers trauma care.
The question soon facing the City Council—and in particular, local member Julie Won—is how much affordable housing is enough to replace the Queens industrial scene with a complex three times bigger than One45, another Harlem development proposal recently squashed over affordability concerns.
The three Democratic candidates in the 34th Senate District find common ground in opposing a proposed supportive housing site for critically ill former Rikers detainees on the campus of Jacobi Hospital, and a 314-unit apartment complex planned for vacant lots along the Bruckner Expressway.
Just six units remain occupied at the Arlington Village complex. Now, those who remain worry about what the owners’ plan to develop the site will mean for them. “What exists now won’t exist.”
“Community Boards are currently being asked to do more with less,” wrote a task force of district managers and administrative staffers in a report released last month. “Especially in the last year-and-a-half, community boards have been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis.”
Once a seemingly promising structure to ensure that real estate groups don’t run roughshod over local neighborhoods in development deals—and still a common practice in other cities—CBAs are now disdained by many New York City community groups and developers alike. The mechanism’s demise is a lesson, development experts say, in both the strength and limitations of demanding concessions in exchange for neighborhood-changing construction projects.
While developers will seriously benefit from a chance to build market-rate apartments in one of the city’s most coveted zip codes, the de Blasio administration says the new construction will also create about 900 apartments deemed affordable under the mayor’s signature Mandatory Inclusionary Housing (MIH) policy.