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Affordable East Harlem apartments will get created under accelerated program

Just one percent of the city’s newly created affordable apartments over the last three years were in the neighborhood

Flickr/Ian Freimuth

The De Blasio administration has made a fair bit of progress in its initiative to create more affordable housing throughout the city. Since 2014, there have been 20,854 affordable units that have been constructed or financed, part of De Blasio’s goal of creating a total of 200,000 new affordable homes by 2024.

Despite all of this, the city’s Department of Housing and Preservation Development released a report showing that just 249 affordable apartments, or one percent, were created in East Harlem, even though more than half of neighborhood residents identify as being rent-burdened, reports DNAinfo.

To address that gap, the city plans to expedite the creation of 2,400 new affordable housing units on public land over the next few years. To make this possible, HPD will “continue to seek out partnerships with non-profit and for-profit developers interested in developing affordable housing on privately owned land, but only where they commit to exceeding the minimum MIH requirements,” per the report.

In addition, the 23-page plan details new workshops hosted by HPD that will educate tenants on their rights, along with more investment into the Tenant Harassment Prevention Task Force to assist those in rent-stabilized homes. It also calls for the city to explore opportunities to create more affordable artist housing, Mandatory Inclusionary Housing to be required by all new residential developments, provide training for local community members to assist others with the affordable housing application process, improving housing quality, and revamping the lottery site for an easier process.

“The East Harlem Housing Plan charts a path forward for the future of housing and economic opportunity in East Harlem, guided by extensive community engagement, said HPD Commissioner Maria-Torres-Springer in a statement.