HELP Buffalo II Providing 47 New Units for Homeless Veterans
Announcement Complements Governor Cuomo's Commitment to Revitalizing Buffalo's East Side
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the grand opening of a new 47-unit supportive and affordable housing development in Buffalo. The $13 million project included the renovation of a vacant historic building and two newly-constructed buildings on adjacent lots. HELP Buffalo II will offer housing and services for low-income families and formerly homeless veterans.
"Supporting veterans and their families is a top priority of this administration, and with this latest investment, we are ensuring that the brave men and women of New York have access to a quality place to call home," Governor Cuomo said. "The opening of HELP Buffalo II will provide 47 supportive housing units for veterans and low-income families, while helping to establish stronger communities across Western New York."
"Today's announcement will help provide 47 supportive housing units for veterans and low-income families consistent with the Governor's landmark action plan launched earlier this year to combat homelessness and create affordable housing across the state," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "It's our responsibility to ensure that the brave men and women who put their lives on the line to protect our freedom receive the support they need."
Located at 366 Broadway near Buffalo's downtown, HELP Buffalo II has a total of 47 apartments, including 15 one-bedroom units for formerly homeless veterans, and two-and-three bedroom apartments available for low-income families. Individualized support services for residents will be provided by the Matt Urban Center, including integrated health care, counseling, employment and youth services.
Help Buffalo II is part of the Governor's commitment to improving housing and stabilizing neighborhoods on Buffalo's East Side. In July, Governor Cuomo announced the commitment of $10 million for a three-year initiative to create homeownership opportunities, make needed home repairs to prevent foreclosure, and fund a targeted zombie property prevention strategy for Buffalo's East Side and the Town of Cheektowaga. The first phase of funding for the three-pronged Neighborhood Stabilization Initiative invests more than $4 million to begin work on nearly 250 homes this year.
Funding for the HELP Buffalo II includes $1.9 million from New York State Homes and Community Renewal's Housing Trust Fund Corporation and $743,700 in Low-Income Housing Tax Credits that will produce more than $7.4 million in equity for the project. In addition, $1.7 million was provided from the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance's Homeless Housing and Assistance Program; $750,000 from the City of Buffalo; $47,000 from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, as well as funding from the Citi Foundation, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York and HELP USA.
RuthAnne Visnauskas, Commissioner of New York State Homes and Community Renewal said, "Help Buffalo II builds on Governor Cuomo's $10 million Neighborhood Stabilization Initiative that is working to revitalize Buffalo's East Side. HCR is proud to join HELP USA, the City of Buffalo, and our colleagues at the Office of Temporary Disability Services in bringing this high-quality development to life. Not only does Help Buffalo II provide 47 good homes and support services to families, seniors, and veterans—it addresses homelessness, breathes new life into a long-neglected building in the heart of the city, and continues Buffalo's amazing renaissance."
OTDA Commissioner Samuel D. Roberts said, "We're pleased to once again partner with HELP USA and congratulate them on the opening of HELP Buffalo II. This project will not only provide an affordable place to live for low-income families and veterans experiencing homelessness, but will also help revitalize the neighborhood."
Senator Tim Kennedy said, "With a combined multimillion dollar investment from city, state, and federal resources, we now have 47 new affordable apartments in Buffalo, including 15 for homeless veterans, all while breathing new life into a historic building in the Broadway corridor. This is once again a demonstration of Governor Cuomo's commitment to preserving and rebuilding Buffalo's East Side, and we thank him, the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance and the NYS Division of Homes and Community Renewal for seeing this critical project across the finish line."
Assemblywoman Crystal D. Peoples-Stokes said, "Congratulations to HELP USA on the grand opening for their Help Buffalo II site. This supportive and affordable housing complex for 47 units is a perfect example of a successful public-private partnership. The ability to help veterans, the homeless and those in need of safe affordable housing while reusing vacant structures on a commercial corridor on Buffalo's East Side is a win-win. I'd like to thank Governor Cuomo for his commitment, and all of the involved partners with funding, construction, and case management."
Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said, “When low-income families and veterans have access to affordable housing, they have security to move forward and improve their lives in other ways. Thanks to Governor Cuomo, HELP Buffalo II will provide opportunities to gain that security, stabilize families and the surrounding community, and breathe new life and possibility into Buffalo.”
Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown said, "My administration has aggressively supported affordable housing in Buffalo over the past 12 years. Since I took office, the City has invested $34.8 million in affordable housing, an investment that has leveraged over $333 million in residential development. In this case, the City's investment of $750,000 helped leverage more than $12 million from various funders, including more than $4.3 million from multiple New York State agencies. Once again, Buffalo thanks Gov. Cuomo for understanding the critical need for affordable housing in our City."