NYC Mayor announces new affordable homeownership opportunities in Southeast Queens

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New York City Mayor Eric Adams has announced milestones in two major projects that will improve infrastructure and quality of life, while tackling the affordable housing crisis in Southeast Queens.

Mayor Adams and New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams — both of whom grew up in the area — celebrated the completion of a $50 million project delivering more than six miles of new sewers and water mains to alleviate flooding of homes and streets in Rochdale under budget.

They also kicked off construction of “Habitat Net Zero,” a project that will turn 13 dilapidated homes previously owned by the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) into 16 green homes for affordable homeownership.

“This community represented the promise of a better life for my family, and I am going to keep that promise for generations of New Yorkers,” said Mayor Adams.

“Government has ignored this community for too long, denying them their fair share of investments and services — that ends in my administration. These projects will make life better for the residents of Southeast Queens today and those who will be able to move here in the future, and I’m proud to say that this is just the beginning.”

“For too long, Southeast Queens has endured systemic disinvestment and neglect, resulting in widening disparities that persist today,” said Council Speaker Adams.

“With the completion of the $49.3 million water infrastructure project in Rochdale and the start of construction for Habitat Net Zero — a project to deliver new affordable homeownership opportunities — our communities are seeing the investments and improvements that we have always deserved. I thank Mayor Adams, Habitat NYC, Interboro CLT, and all of the city agencies involved in making these projects possible.”

“Ever since the residential development of Southeast Queens more than 50 years ago, neighbors have worried about any threat of rain in the forecast, because there were no catch basins or sewers built to drain the roadways, resulting in chronic flooding and property damage,” said Deputy Mayor for Operations Meera Joshi.

“With a commitment of $2.5 billion for a comprehensive drainage system, we are now correcting that past failure block by block, and I thank our teams at DEP, DDC, and DOT for completing this particular project under-budget.”

“Today, we are strengthening our promise to provide families not just homes they can afford but homes they can be proud of,” said Chief Housing Officer Jessica Katz.

“By using every tool available and leaning on great partners — including Habitat for Humanity, which will change the lives of 16 families through their work here — once again, Queens and New York City will be a place where you can raise your family, regardless of income.”

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), and New York City Department of Design and Construction (DDC) have reached substantial completion on a $49.3 million project, bringing more than six miles of new sewers and water mains to Rochdale — improving street conditions, alleviating flooding, and upgrading infrastructure, while staying $5.7 million under budget. Work began in March 2018 and took place on 78 individual blocks.

More than one mile (5,535 feet) of new storm sewers was added to the neighborhood, and an additional 2,265 feet of existing storm sewers were replaced. To better capture stormwater and direct it to the new storm sewers, 55 new catch basins were installed, and 53 old ones were replaced.

The holding capacity of the local sewers was increased with the installation of three new underground chambers and replacement of an old one. During construction, 9,235 feet of sanitary sewers were replaced, and 595 feet of new sewers was installed. More than three miles (16,160 feet) of water mains were replaced to improve water infrastructure reliability.

As part of the final street restoration, 490,240 square feet of asphalt were laid down over a new concrete base. Throughout the project area, 65,840 square feet of sidewalk and 19,370 feet of curbs were reconstructed, and 890 square feet of new sidewalk and 995 feet of new curbs were added.

The new curbs and sidewalks were graded to help guide stormwater to the area’s new catch basins and ensure adequate street drainage during storms. Fire protection was enhanced with the installation of six new fire hydrants and the replacement of 33 existing ones. Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act was improved with the installation of four new pedestrian ramps and the replacement of 158 existing ones.

The project is part of the ongoing $2.5 billion Southeast Queens Initiative, in which the city will build a comprehensive drainage system, improve street conditions, and alleviate flooding in neighborhoods throughout Southeast Queens. The program — the largest of its kind — consists of 44 projects overall, including 18 substantially completed, 14 in design, and three in active construction.

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