AFHDC-Monadnock team selected to develop “micro-unit” project in Manhattan
At a news conference today at the Museum of the City of New York, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and New York City Commissioner of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Mathew M. Wambua announced The Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation (AFHDC) and Monadnock Development have been chosen to construct an innovative, space-efficient building of micro-units in Manhattan’s Kips Bay neighborhood.
We asked Rebecca Sauer, Project Analyst for the Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation to tell us more about the project. You can also read the press release by visiting our website.
New York City is changing. As it strives to nurture and retain the creative and talented individuals that make the city thrive, its housing stock must evolve as well. The Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation (AFHDC) is honored to have been selected, in partnership with Monadnock Development Inc., to develop a residence in Kips Bay that uses modular technology and intelligent design solutions to showcase the “micro-living” concept. The project, dubbed My Micro NY, will cater to New York City’s expanding population of one- and two-person households.
Last July, under the leadership of Mayor Bloomberg and Commissioner Mathew Wambua, the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) announced the adAPT competition as an outgrowth of the Citizens Housing and Planning Council’s (CHPC) Making Room project. By studying the changing city, CHPC discovered a mismatch in demographics and housing stock. There are 1.8 million one- and two-person households and only 1 million studios and one-bedroom apartments to choose from. Affordability is also a major concern, preventing smaller households from accessing appropriate living environments. In order to encourage future development of these apartment types, the adAPT competition asked developers to propose concepts for a site in Kips Bay (at First Avenue between 27th and 28th Streets), allowing smaller units than regulations currently allow, and maximizing livability at the micro scale. Thirty-three development teams entered the competition, and other cities are following suit: in November, San Francisco legislators approved the construction of 220-square-foot apartments, and cities like Boston are launching projects to develop “micro-units” as well.
New Yorkers want and need quality, safe, affordable housing as a base from which they can pursue their dreams and build the lives and careers they envision for themselves. We know this to be true throughout the performing arts and entertainment community that The Actors Fund has served over the last 130 years. Whether they have been working on Broadway for decades, or have just arrived in the city, these individuals are often worried about the stability and affordability of their living situation.
“We formed the Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation as a subsidiary in 2009 for this exact purpose—to be active in creating new housing solutions that will benefit the performing arts and entertainment community,” said Joseph P. Benincasa, President of The Actors Fund. “The fact that My Micro NY has application for other communities and cities is a tremendous opportunity.”
“We are proud to be a member of the development team selected by the Department of Housing Preservation and Development to be at the vanguard of implementing Mayor Bloomberg’s vision to provide a new and innovative option for attractive affordable housing that responds to the changing demographics and preferences of New York City’s residents,” said Scott Weiner, President of the Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation.
The groundwork for our team’s proposal lies within The Actors Fund’s experience co-developing and co-operating The Schermerhorn residence in downtown Brooklyn, which also contains very small units. Lots of natural light, well-programmed community spaces and cultural facilities are the key to enhancing the residents’ experience in the building. My Micro NY, designed by renowned firm nARCHITECTS, will be a tall and slender building with open floor plans that makes use of every inch — and features Juliet balconies. Each unit will be constructed by the Capsys Corporation at their Brooklyn Navy Yard plant, then transported to the site and erected by Monadnock. The Actors Fund will play a leading role in programming the building’s common spaces and creating opportunities for residents to participate in a creative community.
By employing a modular construction method, this project will be completed in a short timeline. Please check our website (www.actorsfund.org) for news and updates.
Read the press release.
Learn more about the Actors Fund Housing Development Corporation.