Three dozen affordable Brooklyn apartments have been sitting vacant for more than two years despite the city’s desperate need for such housing.
The empty Borough Park condos, which were designed for large families, have been in the works for more than 15 years — after the city decided to sell the land for the development to the non-profit South Brooklyn Community Organization.
Then Mayor Michael Bloomberg trumpeted the need for affordable housing in 2005 when he announced the pending sale. But the project has been beset with delays, according to a report.
The head of the South Brooklyn Community Organization blamed the latest setback on the pandemic, saying the group was about to seek approval from the state Attorney General’s office to begin selling the 36 units in early 2020 when COVID-19 hit.
“The project has been affected terribly by the pandemic, as our offices were forced to close, as well as our attorneys’, and, of course the AG’s office,” said Rabbi Avrohom Jaffe. “With the clunkiness of remote communication, what should have taken weeks through face-to-face meetings actually took many months.”
He said the Attorney General approved the offering plan in April and an amendment deeming it “effective” was okayed last month.
The Attorney general’s office blamed the developer, claiming they weren’t given the right documents to sign off on the project.
The apartments, which sit on land that was once the right-of-way for the Culver elevated rail line, start at about $330,000 for a three-bedroom unit. The income limit for buyers depends on the number of occupants, with the top hitting about $142,000 for seven people in a three-bedroom.
The city department of Housing Preservation & Development, which helped process applications for the condos, said homeowners should be able to move in this fall, but did not provide specifics.
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