December 5, 2019
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces Start of Construction on $29 Million Affordable Housing Development for Seniors in Monroe County

TOP Governor Cuomo Announces Start of Construction...

Penfield Square to Create 114 Affordable Apartments for Older Adults, Public Green Space for Community Events 

Investment Complements "Finger Lakes Forward" - The Region's Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy 

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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the start of construction on a $29 million affordable housing development for older adults in the town of Penfield in Monroe County. Penfield Square will offer 114 affordable apartments with 45 apartments set aside for older adults in need of supportive care to live independently.

"Across the state, affordable developments such as Penfield Square make it possible for older adults to live in their own communities," Governor Cuomo said. "Our $20 billion, five-year housing plan is adding and preserving homes to ensure that, regardless of age or income, all New Yorkers can live independent, healthy lives."

"This development adds affordable apartments for seniors to help ensure they have affordable, quality housing options," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "Penfield Square provides over 100 affordable units in Monroe County with supportive care services to make sure seniors live independently and safely. The investment is part of our ongoing efforts to add affordable housing across the state in an effort to combat homelessness, enhance quality of life, and strengthen the economy."

The Governor's commitment to strengthening communities and growing the Finger Lakes economy is reflected in "Finger Lakes Forward," the region's comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. 

The State's investment in Penfield Square complements the Finger Lakes Forward initiative by creating new affordable housing for families. Since 2011, New York State Homes and Community Renewal has financed the creation or preservation of nearly 6,700 affordable multifamily homes in the Finger Lakes Region.

Penfield Square will consist of a single four-story building with amenities that include a community room, fitness center with accessible equipment and laundry facilities on each floor. Each unit will have a private balcony or patio. Outdoor amenities will include community gardens, walking/bicycle trails and parking for residents and guests. The development will include public green space for community events such as small concerts, farmers' markets and food trucks. 

All apartments will be affordable to households earning at or below 60 percent of the Area Median Income. Thirteen apartments will be handicap accessible. Forty-five apartments are reserved for frail older individuals who will receive supportive services administered by the New York State Department of Health through the Governor's Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative. The supportive service provider is Episcopal SeniorLife Communities.

Episcopal SeniorLife Communities' services will include individual care coordination, development of a healthy aging plan, mental health screening, home health services, transportation, discounted meals and support with grocery shopping, meal planning and meal preparation. 

Located on Fairport Nine Mile Point Road, Penfield Square will be located adjacent to the Eastside YMCA facility, which offers a full schedule of programming for older adults. The site is also near major commercial services, shopping, and medical offices. 

Homes and Community Renewal's investment in Penfield Square includes $4.8 million in permanent tax-exempt bonds, federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits that will generate $7.9 million in equity and $14.2 million in subsidy. The Department of Health will provide rental subsidy and funding for onsite social services for the 45 supportive units. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority is expected to provide $87,800. The project developer is Home Leasing. 

The State's investment in Penfield Square also supports the Governor's "Health Across All Policies and Age-Friendly State" initiative by preserving affordable homes for older adults. This collaborative approach integrates health considerations into policymaking across all sectors to improve community health and wellness.

New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, "This exciting new development offers great amenities and supportive services to ensure that 114 older New Yorkers can age in place in a safe, healthy and active community. With walking trails and public green space for community events, residents of Penfield Square will be able to stay connected to their neighbors and enjoy time with family and friends. By creating affordable housing opportunities for seniors, we are making Penfield a more attractive place for families to live, building a stronger local economy, and keeping the Finger Lakes moving forward." 

New York State Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said, "Penfield Square will provide affordable homes for more than 100 seniors, allowing them to remain in their community, surrounded by friends and family. Under Governor Cuomo, New York continues to expand supportive housing opportunities for all those who need them throughout the State."

New York State Office for the Aging Acting Director Greg Olsen said, "Access to safe, affordable, supportive housing is critical to helping older adults stay connected to the vital community resources they need to remain healthy and engaged. Penfield Square furthers our efforts as the first age-friendly state, and this investment in Monroe County is another example of the Governor's ongoing commitment to make New York the healthiest state in the country and a great place to grow up and grow older."

Senator Rich Funke said, "Access to affordable housing is a concern all across our area but particularly for our seniors and young families. I'm pleased to see the Penfield Square project moving forward. It's a perfect example of the State partnering with a great local organization in Episcopal Senior Life to deliver on a critical community priority.

Assembly Member Mark Johns said, "I am proud to support Penfield Square so seniors can obtain affordable housing and continue to reside in the community they love.  New York State's investment, along with Episcopal SeniorLife Communities, is making this possible."

Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo said, "Residents who have spent their lives raising their families in our incredible Monroe County communities are often faced with difficult decisions when looking for affordable and accessible housing. Seniors often want to enjoy retirement near their children and grandchildren while having easy access to the community in which they live, and Penfield Square has been created to meet those needs from the ground up. Today's groundbreaking is yet another step towards new opportunities for Monroe County seniors and their families." 

Penfield Town Supervisor Tony LaFountain said, "Penfield Square will bring much-needed affordable housing for seniors to Penfield in a beautiful setting with green space for the entire community to enjoy. We are excited to see construction underway and look forward to welcoming residents to their new homes. Thank you to Home Leasing, Episcopal SeniorLife Communities, HCR, and everyone who made this project possible."

Home Leasing CEO Bret Garwood said,"Penfield Square will be a wonderful addition to the town of Penfield. This community will offer a wide range of housing options to seniors. Thank you to our partners Episcopal SeniorLife Communities, New York State Homes and Community Renewal, the Town of Penfield, and many more who helped make this project a reality."

Episcopal SeniorLife Communities President and CEO Loren Ranaletta said, "As we continue to extend our footprint to meet the needs of seniors, we are pleased to partner with Home Leasing on this innovative project and expand into a new neighborhood. The development fits nicely with our vision of supporting and growing housing and neighborhood-based services for seniors."

Accelerating Finger Lakes Forward

Today's announcement complements "Finger Lakes Forward," the region's comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $6.1 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan - investing in key industries including photonics, agriculture and food production, and advanced manufacturing. 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 Rochester, Batavia and Canandaigua as a destination to grow and invest in.

Now, the region is accelerating Finger Lakes 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 incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion - and the region's plan, as submitted, projects up to 8,200 new jobs. More information is available here

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