WHDC Updates

WHDC seeks proposals for Community District 9 Affordable Housing Program Administrator

April 8, 2014

West Harlem Development Corporation (WHDC) is seeking proposals from experienced and qualified not-for-profit organizations, and community development entities to function as the Manhattan CD9 Affordable Housing Program Administrator (Housing Administrator) as the principal activity under WHDC’s management of an Affordable Housing Fund (Fund).

The Housing Administrator will report to WHDC, working with the Affordable Housing Committee (Committee) of the WHDC Board to:

  • Design initiatives and programs to provide a range of flexible and affordable financing products to community-based and private developers for the purpose of preserving and developing affordable housing units in the Manhattan Community District 9 (MCD9) area of West Harlem. The boundaries of MCD9 are defined as: South to North from 110th street to 155th street; East to West from Manhattan, Morningside, St. Nicholas, Bradhurst and Edgecombe Avenues to the Hudson River (See map in Exhibit II).
  • Leverage and attract additional funds from public and private sources in the form of debt, equity, and subsidy to supplement and expand the $20 million seed money from Columbia University, described below, for the preservation and development of affordable housing in MCD9. It is the intention of WHDC to create a revolving fund that maintains the corpus of the initial amount of the Fund.
  • Supervise the contractual and development processes of financing and development of housing units from the beginning to the end of projects.
  • Keep WHDC’s Board and its Committee informed of activities and progress.
  • Manage relationships with and among stakeholders, including but not limited to: investors, developers, MCD9’s elected officials, members of the Board of WHDC, applicable New York City agencies, and Community Board 9.

Starting in 2011 and over 25 years, Columbia University (“Columbia”) is constructing approximately 6.8 million square feet of educational mixed-use development that will comprise the new Columbia University Manhattanville campus in West Harlem (Manhattanville Project).  The 17-acre site that Columbia is developing is north of Columbia’s historic Morningside Heights campus and consists of the four large blocks from 129th to 133rd Streets between Broadway and Twelfth Avenue, including the north side of 125th Street, as well as additional areas on the east side of Broadway from 131st to 134th Streets.

Pursuant to the Restrictive Declaration entered into by Columbia University and as recognized in the May 18, 2009 Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) between Columbia and the predecessor organization to WHDC, the West Harlem Local Development Corporation (WHLDC), Columbia has committed to pay $20 million for the creation of an Affordable Housing Fund in two installments of $10 million each, triggered by two phases of construction. Phase I covers the period 2008-2025, and Phase II will cover 2025-2033. The goal of the Fund is to maximize the preservation and new development of affordable housing in MCD9. The objective is to address the potential for the Manhattanville Project to result in indirect residential displacement through increasing rents. The Manhattan CD9 Affordable Housing Program (Housing Program) is a program of the WHDC and as envisaged by the CBA, it seeks to use the Fund to preserve and develop affordable housing in MCD9. As of date, Columbia has paid the first $10 million installment. The second installment may not materialize for at least 10 years from the date of this document. The $10 million paid by Columbia for phase one is currently held in escrow by the New York City Law Department, and is expected to be released to WHDC’s Fiscal Sponsor to fund the Housing Program.

WHDC will issue this Request for Proposals (“RFP”) on April 10, 2014 to identify and select the Housing Administrator. All proposals submitted will become the property of WHDC.  Note that Proposers will be prohibited from receiving payments from the Fund as property developers or rehabilitators.

A Proposers’ Conference will be held on Thursday April 24, 2014 in the office of WHDC at 3:00pm. If a different location is necessary, it shall be announced to prospective participants. The conference is not mandatory but parties interested in responding to this RFP are strongly urged to attend. Attendees should R.S.V.P. with Natali Ramirez at nramirez@westharlemdc.org or 646-476-3394.

An initial letter of Intent to Submit a Proposal must be postmarked by Monday May 12, 2014. A Proposal Application will be made available on-line to those invited to submit proposals by midnight on Wednesday May 28, 2014. The deadline for submitting the completed electronic proposal in response to this RFP is midnight (EST) on Friday July 18, 2014.  WHDC will announce the winning proposal(s) by September 30, 2014.

To download the full RFP, click here.

 

The Intent to Submit a Proposal must be mailed to:

 The Executive Director, Dr. Kofi A. Boateng

West Harlem Development Corporation

423 West 127th Street, Ground Floor, Suite A

New York, NY 10027