Christopher Community’s Riverview Apartments to offer 39 units of
affordable and supportive housing

Local investment complements “Central NY Rising” – region’s successful
Upstate Revitalization Initiative blueprint to grow the economy and create
new opportunities

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that construction has begun on the
$7.35 million Riverview Apartments project in Cortland. When complete, the
two-story, 39-unit building will provide affordable housing for low-income
families as well as supportive housing for individuals who require
behavioral health services. Christopher Community Inc. is developing the
project which is being funded by the New York State Office of Mental
Health, New York State Homes and Community Renewal, the Community
Preservation Corporation and Enterprise Community Investment. Catholic
Charities of Cortland County will provide comprehensive mental health
services to the tenants in the supportive units.

“Access to housing is a basic human right and today we are building on our
efforts to ensure that every New Yorker has a safe and affordable place to
live,” *Governor Cuomo said*. “This project will help provide the most
vulnerable residents in the region with a place to call home and build a
brighter and more sustainable Central New York community.”

Located at 6 – 10 Riverview Avenue, the apartments under construction are
among the thousands of units that form the foundation of the Governor’s
new, $10 billion House New York 2020 program to create or preserve 100,000
affordable units over the next five years.

The 17,306-square-foot building will have a total of 39 affordable
apartments with 20 one-bedroom apartments designated for people with
serious mental illness. Catholic Charities of Cortland County will provide
wrap-around mental health services to these residents. Services can include
case management, housing supports, peer supports, linkage to health home
providers, and 24/7 emergency support. The remaining 19 affordable units
will provide an affordable housing option for low-income families.

“Under Governor Cuomo’s leadership, New York State has developed over 6,000
units of supportive housing over the past four years, with thousands of
additional units in development,” *said New York State* *Office of Mental
Health Commissioner Dr. Ann Marie T. Sullivan*. “The road to recovery can
require a lot of support, not just from mental health professionals, but
from family and friends. Housing projects such as these allow people who
are struggling with their own mental health to stay close to loved ones and
get the help they need.”

“These new apartments will help fill the critical need for expanded
affordable housing opportunities in the City of Cortland and offer a
life-enhancing choice for people who have a mental illness and who are
capable of living independently given appropriate care and support,” *said
HCR Commissioner James S*. *Rubin.* “Governor Cuomo’s commitment to seeing
the region grow and flourish through his Upstate Revitalization Initiative
is complemented by this effort to meet New Yorkers’ housing needs. This
dedication, combined with the compassion and capacity of our partners both
in and out of government are what bring projects such as this to reality.”

Rafael E. Cestero, President and CEO of CPC said, “Supportive housing
is a compassionate and effective pathway to providing some of our most
vulnerable citizens with an opportunity to find stability and a supportive
environment where they can live with dignity. At CPC we have partnered with
the state to help finance thousands of supportive units throughout New
York, and have seen the positive results firsthand. I thank the Governor
for committing an exceptional level of resources to address the need for
supportive housing. I also thank our partners at HCR, OMH, Christopher
Community and Catholic Charities for their commitment to a project that
will provide this community with a much needed resource of affordable and
supportive housing.”

Douglas Reicher, President of Christopher Community, said, “We’re
committed to providing the finest affordable housing in the area. A portion
of these new apartments will be reserved to address the housing needs of
the mental health community as well as individuals with mobility
impairments. The remainder of the building will provide affordable one and
two bedroom apartments.”

OMH provided a $3.5 million construction loan and CPC is providing a $2.5
million construction loan and a $3.5 million private pension fund permanent
loan. The CPC construction loan will be repaid through $3.3 million in
funding from Low-Income Housing Tax Credits and $525,402 from Medicaid
Redesign Team Funds provided by HCR.

Senator James L. Seward said, “Creating affordable housing opportunities
for our low-income and most vulnerable strengthens our communities and
serves a critical public health need. This new complex will meet a critical
need while further enhancing the quality of life for those who live and
work in Cortland. I congratulate Christopher Community and Catholic
Charities as they embark on this transformative project and thank Governor
Cuomo for his support.”

Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton said, “The Riverview Apartments development
promises to be an enormous benefit for the City of Cortland and its
residents, providing much-needed safe, affordable and accessible housing
for some of our most vulnerable citizens, who strive to live independently
in the community. I am proud of the role that state government has played
in making this project a reality and the strong stance the Assembly
Majority has always taken in support of state funding for housing
initiatives. Thanks also to Governor Cuomo, Christopher Community and
Catholic Charities for their steadfast commitment to improving our
communities and the lives of our fellow New Yorkers.”

City of Cortland Mayor Brian Tobin said, “We are working hard to ensure
that Cortland is a city of opportunity for everyone. Thanks to Governor
Cuomo and our great partners in the Riverview Apartments development we
have the chance to build new, high-quality affordable housing that will not
only provide affordable homes for families who are low-income, but also a
safe haven for individuals who need supportive services.”

Tom Eastman, VP of Syndication at Enterprise said, “Enterprise’s
investment in Riverview Apartments is part of our long-term effort to end
housing insecurity in the U.S., which means no more homelessness and no
more families paying more than half their income on rent. We congratulate
Christopher Community and the entire development team for the beginning of
an exciting project.”

Riverview Apartments will be built on property currently owned by Catholic
Charities and began with the demolition of several existing buildings. The
development is jointly owned by Christopher Community and Catholic
Charities of Cortland County. Each unit will be fully accessible for
handicapped individuals. All appliances will be Energy Star and the
building will comply with Enterprise Green Communities Criteria. There will
also be a program office, communal lounge, resident storage space, utility
and laundry rooms, as well as bike storage for residents on the site.
Construction is expected to be completed by the fall of 2016 and the
complex will be ready for occupancy in early 2017.

The 2016-17 Enacted Budget that Governor Cuomo signed into law includes $20
billion over five years for a comprehensive statewide housing and
homelessness action plan.

The $10 billion housing plan boosts state spending on housing programs by
nearly $5 billion and will create and preserve 100,000 affordable housing
units across the state, along with supporting services for New Yorkers
seeking affordable housing. This program builds on the achievements in
affordable housing preservation and construction over the past five years,
including the creation of the Tenant Protection Unit, which has returned
more than 50,000 housing units to rent regulation, and the $1 billion House
NY initiative.

The $10 billion homelessness action plan will also support the creation of
6,000 new supportive housing beds, 1,000 emergency beds, and a variety of
expanded homelessness services over the next five years. Over 15 years, the
state will add 20,000 new units that will build upon 44,000 existing
supportive housing units that the state already funds. This investment
marks the largest commitment to addressing homelessness in New York State

Accelerating Central NY Rising
The development of Riverview Apartments supplements “Central NY Rising,”
the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and
community development. The State has already invested nearly $3 billion in
the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan – capitalizing on
global market opportunities, strengthening entrepreneurship and creating an
inclusive economy. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since
before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down;
and businesses are choosing places like Syracuse, Oswego and Auburn as a
destination in which to grow and invest.

Now Central NY Rising is moving forward with a $500 million State
investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by
Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State’s $500 million investment will
encourage private business to invest well over $2.5 billion – and the
region’s plan, as submitted, projects up to 5,900 new jobs. More
information is available here


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