Organization Name: Asian Americans for Equality
Project Title: East Village Homes
Project Location: Lower East Side, Manhattan
AAFE was awarded an RFP from HPD to develop a vacant lot in the East Village neighborhood of Manhattan through the HPD New Construction Program (NCP). The property is located at 302 E 2nd St and will be 14 stories tall with 44 units of affordable housing ranging from 130% of area AMI to units for very-low-income homeless. The building will feature community facility space on the ground floor and a shared terrace on the 11th floor overlooking E Houston St. Funders include Enterprise Community Partners, Low Income Investment Fund (LIIF), HPD, the NYC Housing Development Corp. (HDC), City Council Member Carlina Rivera, City Council Member Margaret Chin and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer. Additional financing was provided by Enterprise Community Loan Fund, Seachange Capital Partners, TD Bank Charitable Foundation, Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation, Wells Fargo, Valley Bank and M&T Bank. This building will be constructed to meet Enterprise Green Communities standards, intended to maximize comfort for residents while reducing energy costs for building owners. The project broke ground in October 2019 and is currently about 10% ahead of schedule with anticipated completion in summer 2021.
East Village Homes (EVH) will create 44 safe, clean, affordable dwellings for low-income families in an area with high income inequality; half of LES/Chinatown residents earn less than $40,000 while a quarter earns more than $100,000. AAFE focuses on preventing displacement among vulnerable groups by developing more permanent affordable homes.
EVH is currently under construction and 65% complete. Once finished, the project will provide 29 affordable residential rental units (a mix of studio-, 1-bed and 2-bed units) to the community specifically for households earning 80% AMI or below, and 945 sq ft of community facility for direct community services. The project includes 8 direct homeless referral units to address the burgeoning homeless crisis. Thirteen additional affordable units were added utilizing the city’s Voluntary Inclusionary Housing Program. Three units will be fully accessible for the mobility impaired (all will be fully adaptable) and one unit is set aside for hearing/vision impaired. The building façade incorporates punched metal panels designed with local students from Grand Street Settlement’s AmeriCorps career-training program through a series of workshops over a 5-month period.
Founded in 1974, AAFE is a nationally recognized community development non-profit that has evolved from a civil rights & equal justice activist movement, into a mature, nationally-recognized citywide multi-service organization. From humble roots in Chinatown, AAFE has adapted along with its growing immigrant & minority constituency to expand & anchor critical “wrap-around” services in Northern Queens & Sunset Park, Brooklyn, home to the vast majority of the more than 1.1 million NYC residents of Asian-descent that are AAFE’s core target audience.
AAFE (Sponsor/Developer), Leroy Street Studio (LSS) (Architect/Community Engagement), AAD Construction (GC), Juan Alfaro Design (metal panels), Grand Street Settlement (participatory design)