Housing New York is now cleared by the NYC City Council in an overwhelming vote to add 200,000 units over the next decade in New York City. The decision comes after council members met in February on two separate occasions to debate both Mandatory Inclusionary Housing and Zoning for Quality and Affordability.

  • Opponents of de Blasio’s plan have been vocal since its introduction in September, believing the regulations wouldn't help the majority of New Yorkers who need affordable housing the most.
  • The City Council added a requirement that a minimum 10 percent of housing be made affordable to families averaging 40 percent of the area’s median income
  • Last November, almost all of the city’s 59 local community boards rejected the mayor’s affordable housing plan.
  • Allowing the program to benefit residents of more modest means helped shift the opposition into support, according to a Bloomberg report.

Housing New York is now cleared by the NYC City Council in an overwhelming vote to add 200,000 units over the next decade in New York City. The decision comes after council members met in February on two separate occasions to debate both Mandatory Inclusionary Housing  and Zoning for Quality and Affordability.

“New York City is now one step closer to being a city where everyone can work and live. New rules for developers. Fairness and affordability for tenants,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in an official statement. “Years from now, when working-class families and seniors are living soundly in their homes without fear of being priced out, we will look back on this as a pivotal moment when we turned the tide to keep our city a place for ALL New Yorkers.”

Opponents of de Blasio’s plan have been vocal since its official introduction back in September, with many believing the regulations put forth wouldn’t help the vast majority of New York City residents who need affordable housing the most.

Mayor Bill de Blasio/Facebook

Mayor Bill de Blasio/Facebook

The original MIH requirements required 25 percent of residential floor areas for families making 60 percent of the area’s median income, or around $46,620 per family of three. Further, 30 percent of residential floors were to be set aside for families averaging 80 percent of the median income, or about $62,150 per family of three.

In order to expand the scope, the City Council added a requirement that a minimum 10 percent of housing be made affordable to families averaging 40 percent of the area’s median income, which equates to $31,080 for a household of three.

A new Deep Affordability Option requires 20 percent of housing be made affordable to families making 40 percent of the area’s median income, with subsidies when they are necessary to support a greater number of affordable units.

Last November, almost all of the city’s 59 local community boards rejected the mayor’s affordable housing plan. Allowing the program to benefit residents of more modest means helped shift the opposition into support, according to a Bloomberg report.

While Mandatory Inclusionary Housing deals with percentage of developments set aside for affordable units, Zoning for Quality and Affordability outlines building height and senior housing affordability. Much of ZQA’s resistance came from council members concerned about elevator accessibility and elimination of parking in certain zones, but the tone seems to have shifted. Many groups showed their support of De Blasio’s plans for senior housing initiatives after the vote was announced.

“This plan will ensure New Yorkers safe, quality, affordable housing, which will help keep our aging adults and their invaluable economic, cultural, volunteer and family contributions right here in New York,” AARP New York State Director Beth Finkel said.

Email Jennifer Riner

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