Developer's op-ed claims 535 Carlton as example of "Tackling New York’s Housing Affordability Crisis"
How about that.
Gotham Gazette, "a pioneering nonpartisan New York City-based online watchdog publication" (for which I've written), today publishes Tackling New York’s Housing Affordability Crisis, by Ashley Cotton is Executive Vice President, External Affairs at Forest City New York:
One creative solution has already proven to be successful in Brooklyn: public-private partnerships. Last week, Greenland Forest City Partners was proud to open 535 Carlton, our COOKFOX-designed, 298-unit building in one of the most desirable parts of the city. The best part? It’s 100 percent affordable, and proof positive that our public-private affordable housing model delivers great results. This pioneering partnership ensures that Pacific Park Brooklyn, our 22-acre project in downtown Brooklyn, enhances the area’s diversity, vibrancy, and accessibility.My comment:
Working in conjunction with the city and the state, we at Greenland Forest City developed a plan to accelerate the timetable for affordable housing coming online. We committed to delivering 2,250 units of below market-rate housing by 2025. In exchange, the city’s Housing Development Corporation (HDC) provided financial resources to guarantee two 100 percent affordable buildings, 535 Carlton and 38 Sixth Avenue, would start construction earlier than planned. These buildings wouldn’t just be for low-income New Yorkers; they would also include housing for moderate and middle income New Yorkers who have been increasingly priced out of their neighborhoods.
This really isn't an op-ed. It's a promotion. One lesson of 13+ years of Atlantic Yards is that the developer will always be self-serving. We should expect more from Gotham Gazette.
A lot is missing, notably that the affordability. Only 20 percent of Pacific Park's affordable apartments overall were supposed to go to the best-off cohort. Instead, 50 percent of 535 Carlton units qualify: one-bedrooms for $2,680, two-bedrooms for $3,223, and three-bedrooms for $3,716. Such middle-income households represent a tiny fraction of the city.
As to Ms. Patterson winning the lottery, she is understandably fortunate and grateful. But the chances for lower-income applicants are scant, while middle-income applicants had a good shot. While the building's housing lottery drew a whopping 92,743 entries for 297 units (one goes to the super), only 2,203 applicants were income-eligible for the 148 middle-income units, as I reported in April for City Limits.