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Mill Brook Terrace, 158-Unit Affordable Housing Complex for Seniors Celebrates Opening

 Seniors at Mill Brook Terrace, a 158-unit supportive and affordable housing complex for low-income seniors built on the site of a former New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) parking lot in Mott Haven, celebrated their new homes today, the result of an innovative partnership between one of the largest senior housing providers in the Bronx, the West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing (WSFSSH), NYCHA, NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), and Housing Development Corporation (HDC).

“This project shows exactly how we are reimagining our space to create the affordable housing that New Yorkers need,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “These 158 apartments in Mott Haven will provide our seniors with safe, affordable homes and the resources they need to thrive. Thank you to all of our partners for helping to get this done for New Yorkers.” 

“Congratulations to WSFSSH and everyone involved in opening the doors of Mill Brook Terrace, which will help to support seniors as they age in place and with dignity,” said Chief Housing Officer Jessica Katz. “A key goal of Mayor Adams’ Housing Our Neighbors blueprint for housing and homelessness is to provide affordable and safe housing for older New Yorkers. Thanks to DFTA, HPD and NYCHA, we are now able to welcome over 150 residents to their incredible new homes. This is the type of project we need more of to expand our housing stock, bring new partners to the table, and ensure all New Yorkers are stably housed.”

“Mill Brook Terrace is a perfect example of this Administration’s commitment to Housing Our Neighbors as outlined in the Mayor’s Housing Blueprint. These 158 affordable homes with Section 8 rental assistance ensure seniors, including 48 formerly homeless seniors, can age in place with the support and services they deserve,” said HPD Commissioner Adolfo Carrión Jr. “The new senior center will also support the community at large, including the residents of NYCHA’s Mill Brook Houses. Thanks to our partners in government and WSFSSH for bringing this important project to fruition.”

“Mill Brook Terrace and the Mill Brook Senior Center reflect the Authority’s approach to utilizing our resources to build new affordable housing and to provide current NYCHA residents with enhanced community spaces,” said NYCHA Executive Vice President Jonathan Gouveia. “Congratulations to our partners, West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing, on this milestone. We are excited to celebrate with them today and are thankful for their partnership with the Mill Brook Houses tenant association to ensure that this project was fully integrated in to the surrounding campus. The result is a much-needed source affordable housing for low-income seniors that will help enrich this neighborhood for generations to come.”

“Mill Brook Terrace offers secure and stable housing for low-income and formerly homeless seniors, alongside extensive supportive services, a new senior center, and dynamic community space,” said HDC President Eric Enderlin. “Today’s celebration is a testament to the City’s commitment to address a pressing need for more affordable housing through collaborative partnerships. Thanks to the teams at WSFSSH, NYCHA, HPD and HDC for their dedication to creating a more equitable city for all and welcome home to the new residents of Mill Brook Terrace.”

“Time and again, we’ve heard from New Yorkers that our city needs more affordable senior housing, that we as a city need to better support our growing senior population. This collaboration shows how we can get that done, and done beautifully,” said Paul R. Freitag, Executive Director of the West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing. “It is a testament to the deep public and private commitment to this project and this community, even through the darkest days of COVID, that we’re able to celebrate here at a beautiful new Mill Brook Terrace today.”

Selected through a competitive NYCHA ‘NextGeneration’ Request for Proposals (RFP), the project is a direct result of a community visioning process that identified the need for additional senior housing and services in the neighborhood. Citywide, over 42% of NYCHA households are headed by people 62 or older. WSFSSH was awarded the site in 2016, and Mill Brook Terrace was financed in 2017 through HDC’s Extremely Low and Low Affordability Program and HPD’s Senior Affordable Rental Apartments (SARA) program, creating 158 deeply affordable homes, including 48 supportive homes for formerly homeless seniors. Construction was completed in December 2019 and Mill Brook Terrace was fully leased in October 2020.

The project is a ‘win win win’ for the Bronx, area seniors and the city’s housing authority, providing safe, appropriately-scaled apartments for low-income and formerly homeless area seniors, services including nutritional, social, recreational, health, and technology assistance for the broader community, and over $2 million in funding for NYCHA, which will support/supported improvements at the neighboring Mill Brook Houses.  

Mill Brook Terrace will operate an 8,700 square foot senior center that will be open to the local community. The senior center, which was funded by the New York Department for the Aging, includes a commercial kitchen, dining room and space for seniors from the entire community to participate in activities and gatherings.

“Affordable housing for older New Yorkers coupled with greater access to critical community-based services will only further our age-inclusive vision for New York City,” said Department for the Aging Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez. “Congratulations to all of the partners who contributed to this project and to the older adult community in the South Bronx who will directly benefit from it.”

“The opening of Mill Brook Terrace is a win for our community and our city’s low-income seniors, who continue to face immense challenges in finding high quality affordable housing,” said City Council Member, District 8, Diana Ayala. “The physical facility itself and the services that Mill Brook Terrace provides, including a dynamic technology training program in the building’s senior center, sets a remarkably high standard for the future development of affordable housing in New York City.”

“Millbrook Terrace is exactly the kind of development we need for our older adults in the Bronx,” said Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson. “A forward-thinking project that cares for our growing senior population while providing crucial amenities for the community and support for our public housing system. I want to thank everyone that was involved in bringing this project into fruition and my hope is that we continue to invest in similar high quality affordable housing for our seniors to age with dignity throughout our borough and city.”  

New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Daniel W. Tietz said, “The combination of safe, permanent, affordable apartments and on-site support services will greatly assist seniors who have experienced homelessness to live full lives in their community. Mill Brook Terrace is a great addition to the Mott Haven neighborhood and we congratulate the West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing, along with our New York City partners, on the completion of this much-needed development.”  

The building, designed by award-winning architecture firm Perkins Eastman and built by Procida-Butz, features 107 one-bedrooms and 3 studios for low-income seniors, and 48 studios for formerly homeless seniors. Because all units receive Section 8 rental assistance, all tenants pay only 30% of their income toward rent.

Environmental impact and green spaces were a priority in the development: 319 solar panels were installed on the rooftop, which take care of a portion of the electricity needs for the building’s public spaces, including the 8,700 square foot senior center and a 1,000 square foot public community room.

Designed to be fully-integrated with the ten-building Mill Brook Houses, Mill Brook Terrace has open space facing the NYCHA campus as well as landscaping facing the street. A gardening program launched in partnership with GrowNYC takes place in the courtyard garden.

Mill Brook Terrace also brings online broader resources for the community, including a community room available for NYCHA Tenant Association meetings and other community gatherings, comprehensive social services for residents, building-wide free WiFi funded by Capital One, and technology classes regularly attended by residents and community members alike.

The development’s funding comes from a mix of sources, including Capital One; Federal Home Loan Bank of New York; National Equity Fund; New York City Council Discretionary Capital, sponsored by Diana Ayala; New York City Departing for the Aging New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development; New York City Housing Authority; New York City Housing Development Corporation; New York City Office of Environmental Remediation; New York State Office of Mental Health (Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative); New York State Energy Research and Development Authority; and New York State Homeless Housing and Assistance Corporation.

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