By Sydney Price
When East Harlem’s newest affordable housing community opens, its tenants will range from the formerly homeless to those earning as much as 90% of the area’s median income, helping to ease the concerns of locals about gentrification.
Developers closed Thursday on $223 million in financing, including construction loans, grants from city agencies, a letter of credit from Bank of America and federal low-income and solar tax credits. The project -- called Sendero Verde, or “green path” -- will have energy-efficient technology, public gardens and access to onsite social services and even a school.
The upper Manhattan development comes in the midst of an affordable housing crisis in the city. Yet in low-income neighborhoods like East Harlem, residents are wary about being priced out by new development. When the city rezoned the area to allow greater densities and taller buildings, those worries were amplified.
It’s “a great model, and the fact that it’s the first out of the box after one of the most contentious rezonings in the city in a community fearful of gentrification is important,” said Ron Moelis, the chief executive officer of L+M Development Partners, which is building the complex with Jonathan Rose Cos. and Acacia Network Housing.