Niagara Falls, NY, December 16, 2014 – Housing Visions joined with the YWCA of Niagara, City of Niagara Falls, NYS Homes and Community Renewal and NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance for the official ground breaking of Walnut Avenue Homes. Walnut Avenue Homes will provide 41-units of quality, affordable housing to low and very-low income households in addition to individuals with disabilities. The project will inject $12.2 million into the local economy in Niagara Falls.
“This is a great example of how federal funding, provided through the Community Development Block Grant Program and additional HUD resources, can support efforts to breathe new life into our city neighborhoods,” said Congressman Brian Higgins. “Through this collaborative effort the project partners are providing quality living opportunities for local residents and transforming property from vacant to vibrant.”
Paul A. Dyster, Mayor of the City of Niagara Falls stated “The Walnut Avenue Homes project is transforming vacant, government owned properties into quality in-fill housing. Not only are these properties back on the tax roll, they will actually become an asset to the neighborhood for the first time in a generation.”
Assemblyman John D. Cerreto, District 145th stated “New Yorkers deserve a safe, decent and affordable place to call home. I am proud that I was able to support the legislation to help make this project possible.”
Kenyon Craig, President and CEO of Housing Visions stated “Housing Visions is proud to partner with NYS HCR, NYS OTDA, The City of Niagara Falls, and the YWCA of Niagara to bring much needed neighborhood revitalization though the development of affordable housing with the Walnut Avenue Homes project. We truly appreciate all of our partners in Western New York and look forward to continued success in the years to come.”
The $12.2 million, 41-unit project is designed to meet LEED for HOMES and NYSERDA Energy Star certifications. The 8 building project features seven new construction buildings and the historic rehabilitation of a long vacant school administration building. Unit configurations include 12 one-bedroom units, 18 two-bedroom units, and 11 three-bedroom units, as well as resident amenities including a resident community center, computer lab, off-street parking, washer and dryer hook-ups and green space.
This new affordable development in the City of Niagara Falls will be a catalyst to the Walnut Avenue area by eliminating substantial blight and building new homes to further encourage existing residents to invest in the neighborhood.
In 2014 New York State Homes and Community Renewal awarded $2.15 million in Housing Trust Fund financing and $727,055 in annual Low Income Housing Tax Credits as part of the Governor’s initiative to build affordable housing and revitalize communities.
About Housing Visions: Housing Visions mission is to be the catalyst for sustainable positive change in neighborhoods through real estate development and community collaboration. The organization was borne out of a community-based effort in 1990 to rehabilitate and stabilize a declining neighborhood on the east side of Syracuse, NY. Since then, the non-profit development, construction, and property management company has expanded its scope of work to include 11 cities and more than 1,100 units of affordable housing across Upstate New York. Our diverse group of residents includes families, special populations, and senior citizens.