The city wants to partner with developers to build two buildings in East Harlem with 100 percent of the units offered at subsidized rents.

By Brendan Krisel

EAST HARLEM, NY — The city has identified two city-owned sites in East Harlem for new affordable housing buildings and is currently seeking bids to redevelop the properties, city officials announced this month.

An East Harlem school building that now serves as a service center and a parking lot will be transformed into apartment buildings with 100 percent of the units offered at below-market prices, according to the Department of Housing Preservation and Development. At least 30 percent of the homes in one of the targeted sites must be for formerly homeless households, city officials said.

A request for proposals was launched this month and bids will be accepted until late November, city officials said.

"East Harlem, like many other neighborhoods in our city, is experiencing an affordable housing crisis. The release of this RFP brings our community one step closer to creating truly affordable housing that is reflective of our socioeconomic, civic, and commercial needs," City Councilmember Diana Ayala said in a statement.

The city-owned properties are located at 413 E. 120th St., between First and Pleasant avenues, and on Park Avenue between East 118th and 119th streets. The first site, a service center, is currently used as office space for 12 local nonprofits and the second is a parking lot used by the NYPD. HPD is seeking bids from developers that preserve the current uses at each site.


Bids for the service center site must also include a relocation plan for the nonprofits currently using the East 120th Street building for office space, city officials said. The city will prioritize bids with relocation plans that best meet the needs of each organization.


Both city-owned sites were identified as targets for housing through the East Harlem Housing Plan, released in January 2018 using suggestions from the East Harlem Neighborhood Plan. The neighborhood planning process was conducted in preparation of a city proposal to rezone the neighborhood, which passed in November 2017.

Click here to read more