Affordable NYC housing project has been empty for over 2 years

Three dozen affordable Brooklyn apartments have been vacant for more than two years despite the city’s desperate need for such housing.

The empty Borough Park apartments, designed for large families, have been in operation for more than 15 years — after the city decided to sell the land for development to the nonprofit South Brooklyn Community Organization.

Then Mayor Michael Bloomberg trumped the need for affordable housing in 2005 when he announced the pending sale. But the project has been subject to delays, according to a report.

The head of the South Brooklyn Community Organization blamed the recent setback on the pandemic, saying the group was seeking approval from the Attorney General’s Office to begin selling the 36 units in early 2020 when COVID-19 hit.

“The project has been terribly affected by the pandemic when our offices were forced to close, as well as the office of our lawyers, and of course AG,” said Rabbi Avrohom Jaffe. “With the remoteness of remote communication, it actually took many months what should have taken weeks through face-to-face meetings.”

He said the Attorney General approved the offer plan in April, and an amendment that considered it “effective” was approved last month.

Dozens of affordable apartments in Borough Park, Brooklyn, have been vacant for two years.
The city sold the land to begin developing the condominiums for the nonprofit South Brooklyn Community Organization 15 years ago.
South Brooklyn Community Organization

The Attorney General’s office blamed the developer and claimed that they did not get the right documents to log on to the project.

The apartments, located on land that was once the road to the Culver-elevated railroad line, start at about $ 330,000 for a three-bedroom unit. The income limit for buyers depends on the number of residents, with the peak hitting about $ 142,000 for seven people in a three-bedroom.

The City Department of Housing Preservation & Development, which helped process applications for the condominiums, said homeowners should be able to relocate this fall, but did not provide details.

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