Governor Cuomo Announces Start Of Construction On Two Housing Developments That Will Offer 159 Affordable Homes In Monroe County

Wellington North Will Create 50 New Affordable and Energy-Efficient Homes for Seniors; Substantial Renovation of Wellington Woods Will Give Aging 109-Apartment Complex New Life in the Town of Clarkson 
Investment Complements “Finger Lakes Forward” – The Region’s Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that construction is underway on two affordable housing developments in the town of Clarkson in Monroe County that will together provide 159 affordable homes for families and seniors. Wellington North will be a $16 million affordable and supportive housing development for seniors with 50 apartments in a newly constructed building. Right next door, the $19 million substantial renovation of Wellington Woods will extend the life of the 109-apartment affordable housing complex for decades to come.

“Every New Yorker deserves a home to go to at the end of the day and a safe place to rest their head, and once complete these affordable homes will do just that,” Governor Cuomo said. “Wellington North and Wellington Woods are essential components of our affordable housing infrastructure and safety net for families and seniors and will play an integral role as we continue our work to build up our communities and move the Finger Lakes Forward.”

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said, “New York State is committed to providing safe, quality, affordable housing for seniors and families in Monroe County. As the Finger Lakes region gears up for a post-pandemic economic recovery, Wellington North and Wellington Woods will revitalize housing and quality of life in the Clarkson community.”

The Governor’s commitment to providing all New Yorkers with access to safe, affordable housing is reflected in the state’s unprecedented $20 billion, five-year Housing Plan. The plan makes housing accessible and combats homelessness by building or preserving more than 100,000 affordable homes and 6,000 with supportive services.

New Wellington North to Offer 50 Affordable Homes for Seniors 

Wellington North, which is taking shape at 1100 Wellington Woods Drive East in the town of Clarkson, will be constructed on a five-acre lot that will feature a new two story, L-shaped, elevator-accessible building. The more than 52,000-square-foot building will provide 50 affordable apartments for seniors aged 62 and older. Sixteen of the homes reserved for seniors in need of supportive services to live independently.

Eighteen of the apartments will serve households at 30 percent of Area Median Income and 32 apartments will be for those earning 50 percent or less of the AMI. Six of the apartments will be accessible for people with mobility impairments and two units will be available for residents with visual or auditory impairments.

The Rochester Housing Authority will serve as a referral agency for households in need of accessible features and will provide 50 Project Based Section 8 Vouchers to assist with rent payments. Lifespan, a local senior citizen services provider, will make case management, in-home health and personal care aides, and financial counseling available as needed.

Each apartment will have a patio or a balcony and there will be a common porch at the front entrance as well as a rear patio off a community room.  Building amenities include laundry rooms on each floor, a community room, lounges, and a storage room. The property is in a wooded area with access to walking trails.

Wellington North will meet both NYSERDA’s Low Rise New Construction program requirements for energy efficiency and the LEED Green Building standards. A ducted Air Source Heat Pump system will be installed to provide an affordable and sustainable source of heating and cooling for the entire building.

HCR financing for Wellington North includes $8.2 million in federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits and an additional $5.4 million in subsidy. The Community Preservation Corporation and Chase are providing an $11.7 million construction loan for the project. CPC will also provide $1.7 million in permanent financing through a Freddie Mac Optigo Targeted Affordable loan. Monroe County is providing an additional $250,000 in HOME funding to support the project. NYSERDA is contributing $50,000 through the Low Rise New Construction program.

Wellington Woods Rehab Will Provide 109 Affordable Homes for Families 

Wellington North’s sister project, Wellington Woods, is the rehabilitation of a 109-unit building that was constructed in 1979. A total of 106 apartments are set aside for households earning 60 percent or less of the Area Median Income.

The project, now approximately 40 percent complete, includes new kitchens, new bathrooms, plumbing, lighting fixtures, new appliances, flooring, ductless split HVAC systems, and roof replacements. Exterior upgrades include repaved parking lots, new siding with added insulation, and full replacement of exterior patios, decking and railings. Other new amenities include a laundry facility, community room, improved outdoor space, and a new playground.

HCR financing for Wellington Woods renovation includes $5.7 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credits, $4.1 million in Multifamily Preservation Program funds, $3.7 million in Homes for Working Families funds, and $186,000 in funding from the Middle Income Housing Program. Other funding includes $109,000 from NYSERDA.

Both developments are owned and managed by ODS Management.

HCR Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “When we finance affordable housing developments, our goal is always to invest in and improve communities. These two developments in the town of Clarkson with 159 homes are the epitome of what we envision when we picture a sustainable, livable neighborhood – especially for the seniors who are long-time residents. With the new construction of Wellington North and the preservation of Wellington Woods, we are expanding quality, energy-efficient housing opportunities that will advance the Governor’s revitalization efforts in Monroe County and across the Finger Lakes.”

Doreen M. Harris, President and CEO at NYSERDA, said, “NYSERDA is pleased to provide support for energy efficient affordable housing developments, which will provide comfortable and healthy living spaces for our most vulnerable New Yorkers while reducing the carbon footprint of these buildings. Projects like these take a comprehensive approach to serving the needs of community residents while helping the state combat the impacts of climate change by incorporating solutions that better insulate and heat and cool the buildings to deliver energy and cost savings.”

Senator Jeremy Cooney said, “Greater Rochester needs more affordable housing, particularly for our aging population. These new living spaces for seniors come at a critical time as we recover from COVID19. The new development as well as the renovation of Wellington Woods offer this critical affordable housing allowing citizens to stay and age in Clarkson.”

Assembly Member Stephen Hawley said, “I look forward to seeing this project move forward and one day be a place dozens of seniors call home. I hope its development progresses swiftly and smoothly.”

Town of Clarkson Supervisor Christa Filipowicz said, “On behalf of the Town of Clarkson we welcome Wellington North and the many amenities these beautiful new apartments will bring to our residents. Just to the west of Wellington North is the original Wellington Woods which has been a valuable, quiet and quaint asset to our town for decades. We welcome the many new neighbors and the enrichment this new community will bring to Clarkson.”

Stephen Lee, Vice President, Investment Manager, RBC Community Investments, said, “RBC Community Investments is proud to partner with ODS Management Group by providing a combined $14MM of federal LIHTC equity for the Wellington Woods and Wellington North projects.  These two developments will provide a high quality housing option for seniors and families in Clarkson, and we look forward to seeing the positive impact that these homes will have on the community.”

Mark Ogiony, President of ODS Management said, “The past year’s events have significantly increased the need for the support of our seniors and families in the Finger Lakes region and across the country. ODS Management is doing its part with the development of Wellington North and rehabilitation of Wellington Woods. The projects bolster the support for seniors as well as families in Brockport and the surrounding area and shows ODS Management’s continued commitment and dedication to provide quality, affordable housing to those who need it. We are happy to once again show our support for seniors and families in Monroe County and to keep the Finger Lakes moving forward.”

Miriam Zinter, Mortgage Officer at The Community Preservation Corporation, said, “For our senior citizens, the challenges of living on a fixed income while the costs of housing, healthcare and other necessities continue to increase, can put them in a vulnerable position. Investing in projects like Wellington North will provide affordable homes tailored to the needs of an aging population, as well as peace of mind and the ability to age in place with grace and dignity. My thanks to ODS Management, Chase, and HCR for their commitment and partnership.”

Mark Migliacci, Vice President, Community Development Banking, Chase, said, “We’re proud to play a role in the financing of Wellington North, which will deliver new affordable housing units for seniors to Monroe County. We continue to be committed to community development projects like this one, which will have a tremendous impact on the lives of future residents.”

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 $8.07 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. 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.