NYC Officials, BFC Partners, Breaking Ground Celebrate New Yorkers Moving into Affordable Housing at Former Bedford Union Amory

rendering of Bedford Union Armory campus in Crown Heights

BROOKLYN, NY – (March 21, 2023) – Today, NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), Housing Development Corporation (HDC), Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC), and Chief Housing Officer Jessica Katz joined BFC Partners and Breaking Ground to celebrate New Yorkers moving into affordable homes at 1101 and 1089 President Street in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. As a part of the redevelopment of the historic Bedford Union Armory, the two residential buildings were built from the ground up to deliver 415 homes, 250 of which are affordable. The armory itself was converted into the Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center, New York City’s first and largest comprehensive center with medical, emotional, and recreational practices at affordable rates for the Brooklyn community.

At 1101 and 1089 President Street, Breaking Ground provides voluntary social services to households making the transition from shelter to permanent affordable housing, with the overarching goal of promoting long-term success in housing. Twenty-five homes were set aside for households experiencing homelessness and the remaining affordable units were earmarked for households earning between 30% - 60% of Area Median Income, ranging from $23,178 to $72,060 for a family of three.

The residential buildings were designed by Marvel Architects and constructed through the Extremely Low & Low-Income Affordability (ELLA) Program of HDC and HPD, and the Mandatory Inclusionary Housing (MIH) Program of HPD. Financing was provided by Wells Fargo, the Urban Investment Group within Goldman Sachs Asset Management (Goldman Sachs) and Citi.

“The Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center is an incredible new addition to the Crown Heights community, and for the more than 400 households who get to live alongside these resources and amenities, what a great place to call home,” said Chief Housing Officer Jessica Katz. “Today we are delivering on the promise in Mayor Adams’ Housing Our Neighbors Blueprint to deliver affordable housing across the five boroughs. Congratulations to HPD, BFC Partners, and Breaking Ground on opening the doors to this much needed new housing in the community.”

"Once serving the most exclusive National Guard unit in Brooklyn, the Bedford Union Armory will now serve the most important people of this borough – the children, the families, and the individuals who call this community home," said HPD Commissioner Adolfo Carrión Jr. "We are proud to have worked with our partners to bring these 250 affordable homes and community center to Crown Heights.”

“This transformative development will benefit the Crown Heights community for generations with the addition of new affordable homes, a comprehensive affordable health and wellness center, and office space for local non-profit organizations,” said HDC President Eric Enderlin. “Congratulations to our partners and welcome home to all the residents of the Bedford Union Armory.”

“These two new housing developments are a terrific addition to the Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center, both of which will provide crucial resources to the Central Brooklyn community,” said NYCEDC President and CEO Andrew Kimball. “The Mayor R. Owens Center is a key example of how NYCEDC is finding new ways to improve livability and create essential neighborhood infrastructure to ensure that all New Yorkers can thrive. NYCEDC is proud to have partnered with HPD, HDC and BFC Partners on this project that will bring new life to communities and create new opportunities for economic growth.”

Apartments come equipped with stainless steel fixtures, energy-efficient appliances, and in-unit washers and dryers. Select apartments have private balconies. Amenities include a furnished rooftop, a coworking space with private conference rooms, an indoor-outdoor fitness center, a resident lounge, an outdoor prep kitchen with grilling stations, bicycle and personal storage, and on-site parking.

NYC Economic Development Corporation released a Request for Proposals for the redevelopment of the Bedford Union Armory in 2013, and after extensive engagement with residents, business owners, elected officials, and other local stakeholders, NYCEDC selected BFC Partners in 2015 to realize the long-held community vision. The new Major R. Owens Health and Wellness Community Center opened in October 2021. The state-of-the-art, 60,000 square-foot retrofitted drill shed serves as a neighborhood recreation center, complete with a 25-meter, six-lane competitive swimming pool, basketball courts, and a multi-purpose court able to accommodate a wide variety of sports, including soccer and community programming.

“We are proud to welcome new residents to 1101 and 1089 President Street and so glad to celebrate this milestone with so many of our partners who made this project possible,” said Don Capoccia, Managing Principal of BFC Partners.

“Meeting the urgent need for affordable housing is no small task. We congratulate BFC Partners and the many New York City agencies that brought these apartments to life,” said Brenda Rosen, President and CEO of Breaking Ground. “As the project continues to welcome families who are exiting homelessness into their beautiful new homes, we are proud to provide social services that help them remain stable in housing for the long-term.”

“Wells Fargo is proud to continue its relationship with BFC Partners to help create an affordable and attractive place to live for New Yorkers,” said Alan Wiener, Vice Chairman of Multifamily Capital and Community Lending & Development at Wells Fargo. “The team’s values align with our commitment to providing debt and tax credit equity to create and preserve much needed housing in the communities in which we live and serve.”

“We are pleased to have been part of the 1101 and 1089 President Street financing team, a unique project that not only will provide safe, modern, affordable housing for 250 families, but maintains the integrity of the historic Bedford Union Armory,” said Richard Gerwitz, Managing Director of Citi Community Capital. “BFC Partners has always proven to be a thoughtful and creative developer and has done so again with the completion of this project.”