Queens, NY Borough president Donovan Richards, state assembly member Khaleel Anderson, agencies, community leaders and other dignitaries joined BRC and Camber Property Group at a groundbreaking ceremony for Beach Channel Dr., a 100% affordable housing development in Far Rockaway.
The $97 million project will be co-developed by BRC and Camber Property Group with an expected completion in January 2025.
The building was designed by UAI, and Fifth Ave Builders will serve as the general contractor. The project is financed in partnership with Citibank, Freddie Mac and the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development.
The eight story, 133,601 s/f project will include 147 new affordable apartments, as well as 100 shelter units with supportive services for single women provided by BRC. The shelter units, which will be managed by BRC, will follow their Landing Rd. program, a clinically-based model that provides services specifically targeted toward the needs of this vulnerable population, with an overarching focus on recovery and community reintegration goals.
Beach Channel Dr. will replace three vacant buildings that were purchased by the development team in April 2022. Beach Channel Dr. Apartments will have 125 studios, 9 one-bedroom, and 13 two-bedroom apartment units. 88 of the studio units will be supportive units reserved for formerly homeless individuals. All units will be affordable to households earning between 30% and 60% of the area median income (AMI).
Beach Channel Dr. Apartments also features 1,239 s/f of community space. Resident amenities at the building will include full-time security and maintenance staff, on-site staff offices, social service programming space, a community room, outdoor recreational space, bike storage, and a laundry room.
Beach Channel Dr. Apartments will meet Enterprise Green Communities Standards and includes Energy Star appliances, water conserving fixtures, low-VOC finishes, and coated windows. Insulation and roof coating and materials are designed to be energy efficient.
“This exciting project shows the Adams’ Administration’s wise and economical use of city resources to develop places of dignity where shelter and housing come together to effectively meet the needs of people experiencing homelessness,” said Muzzy Rosenblatt, BRC CEO & president. “By creating a beautiful and vibrant environment, our most vulnerable neighbors’ needs will be met with love and respect. Thanks to the partnership with Camber Property Group and the efforts of many other partners, this approach replicates BRC’s innovative Landing Rd. model that reinvests earned income from a shelter to create low-income housing affordable to those with low incomes.”
“Providing a pathway for New Yorkers to secure permanent and stable housing is critical to addressing the most pressing needs of our city. We’re thrilled to partner with BRC, an outstanding provider of transitional and supportive housing, and the Adams’ Administration to construct 147 units of housing together with a 100 bed transitional housing facility for women,” said Rick Gropper, co-founder and principal, Camber Property Group. “I also want to thank our partners in government and the private sector, including Borough president Richards and HPD, for their demonstrated commitment to building new affordable housing, creating homes for those New Yorkers who need them the most.”
“Citi is proud to have worked on this unique project with BRC and Camber which will provide shelter for unhoused New Yorkers as well as affordable housing for lower income working families and individuals,” said Richard Gerwitz, managing director of Citi Community Capital. “It is truly groundbreaking in many respects, including the combination of the two uses and as an early user of a new Department of Homeless Services long-term contract.”
“Our Borough and our entire City are experiencing a severe shortage of affordable housing in general and of affordable supportive housing in particular,” said borough president Donovan Richards Jr. “So I commend Camber Property Group, BRC, and all of the partners on this project for stepping up to the plate to help address this critical shortfall. We will not turn our backs on those who are most in need.”
“Providing housing to our community’s most vulnerable residents can be a launching pad to their success and it must be done through the lens of equity,” said NYC majority whip Selvena Brooks-Powers. “With the housing crisis in New York City reaching a tipping point, this development with new housing, much-needed community space and wraparound services, provides my community with vital resources that will help continue Downtown Far Rockaway’s renaissance.”
“With so many families and individuals suffering from chronic and mental illnesses, the public health crisis we face is across-the-board,” said state assembly member Khaleel Anderson. “We must expand the supportive housing model equitably and responsibly, prioritizing wraparound social and healthcare services. Residents will also benefit from structured programming to ensure that the most vulnerable New Yorkers can have a safe environment in which to live. I look forward to ensuring that this development is a success and that we can get more unhoused Rockaway residents off the streets and into safe, decent, and affordable supportive housing.”
“Now, more than ever we need affordable housing in Queens and especially the Rockaways,” said state senator James Sanders Jr. “I welcome this new site which is an excellent example of what can be accomplished when private industry works with government partners and the community.”
“The construction of projects like Beach Channel Dr. is essential to our ongoing efforts to connect New Yorkers in need to high-quality stable housing options and other supports. This development is set to provide vulnerable New Yorkers the chance to not only stabilize their lives but to thrive,” said Department of Social Services commissioner Gary Jenkins “We are excited to see construction getting under way on this incredible project, and we are so grateful for our partners in city government and the private sector who are working to make this a reality and meet the needs of some of the city’s most vulnerable populations.”