Warren Residence

Organization Name: Praxis Housing Initiatives, Inc

Project Title: Warren Residence

Project Location: Wakefield, Bronx

Project Goals:
Opened in May 2014, Praxis Warren Residence was developed in partnership with NYC HPD and NYS HCR for the purpose of developing permanent supportive housing for homeless individuals and couples that meet NY/NY III criteria. Warren Residence specifically serves chronically homeless single adults and families without children who suffer from a co-occurring serious and persistent mental illness, a substance abuse disorder, and/or HIV/AIDS.

To design a building that achieves true high-performance: one that is cost-effective over its entire life cycle, safe, secure, accessible, flexible, aesthetic, productive, and sustainable.

Project Description:
The project involved the new construction of a 61-unit permanent supportive housing program in the Wakefield section of the Bronx. The 41,000 square foot building was designed by Harden & Van Arnam Architects and is comprised of 18 alcove studios, 42 studios and 1 one- bedroom apartment for the Superintendent. The primary referral source is NYC DHS and all tenants meet NY/NYIII criteria. The program offers comprehensive onsite support services. This innovative project integrates a rooftop greenhouse for year round activities, rainwater capture, a teaching kitchen and outdoor growing beds for food and flower production. During the summer of 2016 almost 600lbs of vegetables were harvested from the garden and provided to the tenants. Financing: NYC HPD, NYS HCR LIHTC, Bronx Borough President, NYSERDA, Deutsche Bank America Foundation, Corporation for Supportive Housing

Community Impact:
The project was developed on a vacant lot in the Wakefield area of the Bronx. With community input, Praxis developed a permanent supportive housing program that includes an Urban Farm. The building, located across from the elevated subway tracks features a greenhouse on the second floor, a garden with seven growing beds, a teaching kitchen in the basement, with space for a farmers market on the north side of the building. Collectively these amenities constitute an integrated facility for the neighborhood and the residents that provides: healthy food; gardening, cooking and nutrition classes; exercise opportunities; horticultural instruction; green job training; and horticultural therapy.

Praxis has developed partnerships with Community Based organizations such as Bissel Gardens. Bissel utilizes the teaching kitchen to conduct education workshops for the youth of the community on environmental studies and Urban Farming.

Organization Description:
Founded in 1995, Praxis Housing Initiatives’ (Praxis) mission is to stabilize chronically homeless persons living with special needs through clean, safe housing and to provide services that lead to recovery, stability, and ultimately, independence. From its inception, Praxis has been a leader in providing housing services for homeless Persons Living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHAs) and other needy New Yorkers and continues to deliver quality and cost-effective services at four Congregate Transitional Supportive Housing facilities, and three Scatter site housing programs for homeless single adults and families. As NYC’s largest provider of transitional housing to homeless people with HIV/AIDS, Praxis has been the place of first resort for over 25,000 clients. Praxis’ 137 staff members provide year round 24-hour housing services to nearly 680 men, women and children each night and 1,500 people a year.

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