L+M builds affordable houses in Bronx, signs deal with labors union

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Affordable housing giant L+M Development Partners has struck a hiring deal with Laborers’ Local 79, the biggest laborers’ Local in North America.

The deal, according to the L+M, is aimed at creating job opportunities for people in the Bronx.

While disclosing this in a statement on Saturday November 21, 2020, Mike Prohaska, business manager of Laborers’ Local 79, said that the job of building and renovating 3,200 affordable apartments in Harlem, East New York and the Bronx will be given to more of the people who live there and pay them $40 per hour, along with healthcare and retirement benefits.

“With this agreement, we’re setting a new precedent for how to build permanently affordable housing with union labor, hire locally and create more pathways to the middle class in low-income communities of color,” Prohaska said.

The hiring pact is the first major deal that Laborers’ Local 79 has done directly with an affordable housing developer and, according to L+M CEO Ron Moelis, sets a new standard for moving forward.

“I’m hopeful it will provide a broader model for how builders and labor can work together to create much-needed affordable housing in every corner of the city as we work to recover from the pandemic,” said Moelis.

The partnership’s first projects include the 361-unit Sendero Verde (rendering top) a 100 percent affordable project in East Harlem that L+M is developing in partnership with Jonathan Rose Companies and Acacia Network. That project topped out last week.

Rendering of the Bronx Point development
It will also include the 542-unit first phase of Bronx Point in the South Bronx that L+M is developing with Type A Projects and will include the new Universal Hip Hop Museum and a riverfront park.

And it will cover rehabilitation projects at two New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) sites: Linden Houses in East New York, Brooklyn and Harlem River Houses I & II in Harlem, both of which are expected to begin construction in 2021.

L+M is partnering with Douglaston Development, Dantes Partners and SMJ Partners on the Linden Houses project, and is serving as contractor for Settlement Housing Fund and West Harlem Group Assistance’s rehab of Harlem River Houses I & II.

Sendero Verde phase one includes 361 apartments, a new public charter school and a 12,000 s/f community center for youth and seniors operated by Union Settlement.

Upon completion of its second phase, the 700-apartment project will be the largest residential passive housing development in the country.

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