THE CPC WAY / Community Development

Restoring Living Conditions for Residents of Neglected Rochester Apartment Buildings

By Rafael E. Cestero, Chief Executive Officer

CPC and partners recently celebrated the start of a gut rehabilitation of 63 extremely distressed apartments in two buildings located in Rochester, New York. Breaking ground on this project marks the beginning of the end to what has been a long and tenuous journey for residents.

Ceilings collapsed, squatters occupied vacant units, and sewage backed up into bathtubs.

Even when court hearings, a rent strike, and legal action taken by the City of Rochester were not enough to compel the landlord to address the litany of safety hazards and code violations, the tenants of the buildings on Thurston Road and Chili Avenue didn’t rest until they found relief.

Thanks to committed partners at the local, city, and state level, the buildings are now being renovated and under new responsible ownership by longtime CPC partner, Home Leasing, Inc.

CPC is proud to administer the $10 million in construction funds allocated by New York State Homes and Community Renewal, as well as provide a $1.18 million CPC construction loan, and a SONYMA-insured permanent loan financed through our partnership with the New York State Common Retirement Fund.

We believe that every person deserves access to a safe, affordable place to call home. We roll up our sleeves and pull up a chair to work through challenging projects that send other lenders running in the opposite direction.

Thank you to our partners and community members who made this project possible: Home Leasing, New York State Homes and Community Renewal, Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren, the New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, Spiritus Christi Prison Outreach, and the 19th Ward Community Association. Together, we will continue to lend a helping hand to those with nowhere else to turn.

And finally, congratulations to the tenants, whose years of advocacy ended with an inspiring lesson in civic participation. We are proud to be part of the team that responded to their call for the quality living conditions they deserve and look forward to welcoming them home when the renovation is complete.


Tenants of these Rochester apartment buildings on Thurston Road (left) and Chili Avenue (right) have been temporarily relocated while gut renovations take place. 

Learn more:


Photo credit (top): Andrew Hill, New York State Office of the Comptroller

By Rafael E. Cestero, Chief Executive Officer
Rafael E. Cestero is the Chief Executive Officer of the Community Preservation Corporation (CPC), and a member of its board of directors.


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