With the opening of 175 Delancey Street earlier today, the de Blasio administration and the developers behind the Lower East Side megaproject, Essex Crossing, tried to reinforce their commitment toward affordable housing. They named the 15-story building after longtime activist and literary agent Frances Goldin, who was present at Tuesday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony.
While the building opened to some residents in November last year, Tuesday’s event marked its official opening, and also the opening of the first completed building at the Lower East Side megaproject that will eventually bring 1,079 new apartments to the neighborhood.
The day’s festivities were also a celebration for residents of the former Seward Park Urban Renewal Area, whose tenements were demolished 50 years ago with a promise of return. Decades and several administrations later, that promise has finally been fulfilled, and some lucky tenants have actually been able to return to the site. Six have moved into the building at 175 Delancey Street, and eight more will move into the building at 145 Clinton Street, The Rollins, when it opens later this year.
“As a former site tenant, I’m very pleased that we finally have affordable housing on sites left vacant for nearly 50 years,” said Tito Delgado, a former site tenant. “I’m also glad that my former neighbors are able to have new, quality housing right here in the community they used to call home.”
“Today is a real homecoming,” added Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen, who was present at Tuesday’s opening. “This ribbon-cutting is one for the ages.”
Overall, the Essex Crossing megaproject, which is being developed by the Delancey Street Associates, will bring 561 permanently affordable apartments to the Lower East Side. Work on all but 35 of those units is now underway.
The development team, which includes BFC Partners, L+M Development Partners, Taconic Investment Partners and the Goldman Sachs Urban investment Group, is developing nine sites in multiple phases, and in addition to the apartments, the project will also bring with it a Regal Cinemas, a Trader Joe’s, a Target, a new home for the Essex Street Market, and an underground market known as The Market Line, among other additions.