Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the grand opening of Landmark Place, a $25 million affordable housing campus in the city of Kingston in Ulster County. The development features 66 new affordable apartments for seniors aged 55 and older, including 35 homes reserved for seniors in need of supportive services to live independently.
"New York's seniors deserve access to safe, affordable, and supportive housing in the neighborhoods they call home," Governor Hochul said. "My administration is dedicated to addressing the rising cost of housing with decisive action and additional resources, especially for our most vulnerable New Yorkers. Developments like Landmark Place are providing affordable homes, promoting the wellbeing of residents, and strengthening our communities for the future."
The completion of Landmark Place complements Governor Hochul's plan to make housing across New York State more affordable, equitable, and stable. In the FY 2023 State Budget, the Governor introduced and successfully secured a new $25 billion, five-year, comprehensive housing plan that will increase housing supply by creating or preserving 100,000 affordable homes across New York including 10,000 with support services for vulnerable populations, plus the electrification of an additional 50,000 homes.
Landmark Place includes the transformation of a historic building into 34 studio apartments, now called Landmark West, and the new construction of a four-story building with 32 one-bedroom apartments, known as Landmark East.
The 14-acre site located at 300 Flatbush Avenue in Kingston was the longtime home of the historic Kingston Almshouse. Completed in 1874, the Kingston Almshouse provided housing and limited medical care to its residents until its closure in the 1940s. Nearly a decade later, Ulster County acquired the empty building and rehabilitated it to serve as the Ulster County Chronic Infirmary, and later the offices of the Ulster County Health Department. The building had been vacant since 2014.
All 66 apartments are affordable to senior households with incomes at or below 60 percent of the Area Median Income. Thirty-five apartments are set aside for residents in need of supportive services, including disabled veterans. These residents have access to rental subsidies and an array of onsite services funded through the Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative and administered by the NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance.
Services include self-advocacy support, medication management and training by an onsite Licensed Practical Nurse, daily living skills training, skill development support, and socialization activities.
Landmark Place was developed by RUPCO, who also serves as the property manager and the service provider.
Residential amenities include 24/7 front desk staff, onsite laundry, onsite superintendent, garden space, proximity to mass transportation routes, and in-house transportation with drivers to assist in transporting residents to major local service points for medical and benefit services.
State financing for Landmark Place included $2.4 million in permanent tax-exempt bonds, Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits that generated $8.5 million in equity and $9.5 million in subsidy from New York State Homes and Community Renewal. The NYS Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation approved Federal and State Historic Tax Credits that generated $1.5 million in equity. The New York State Federal Home Loan Bank awarded a $1.3 million grant and TD Bank provided a $125,000 grant. Additional financing partners include the National Equity Fund.
Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, "We are thrilled to have been able to partner with RUPCO and our fellow state agencies to breathe new life into the historic Kingston Almshouse in a way that honors the building's long legacy of public service. With 66 affordable homes for seniors and veterans, including 35 with supportive services, the new development will provide a haven for New Yorkers to age in place with dignity in a comfortable and engaging living environment. Under Governor Hochul's new five-year Housing Plan, we are committing more resources than ever to expand and protect affordable housing opportunities for seniors in the Mid-Hudson region and beyond."
Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Daniel W. Tietz said, "Supportive housing is fundamental to our ongoing efforts to address homelessness across the state, and a central component of providing affordable, permanent housing for formerly homeless individuals and families. The combination of affordable housing and a variety of supportive services available onsite at Landmark Place will enable Ulster County seniors to live independently and thrive."
New York State Office for the Aging Acting Director Greg Olsen said, "Today's grand opening further demonstrates Governor Hochul's commitment to age-friendly principles that holistically meet the housing, social, and community support needs of older adults across New York State. Such models help address housing affordability while offering the resources necessary to help individuals stay in their homes as they age."
Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Commissioner Erik Kulleseid said, "Landmark Place is a great example of recognizing value in civic resources and working collaboratively to have a transformative impact in a community. By utilizing federal and state historic tax credits as part of their project and rehabilitating a previously vacant building in the City of Kingston, RUPCO demonstrates its commitment to quality housing opportunities for people at all income levels and provides a model to consider for future projects. We are glad to be part of such efforts."
Senator Chuck Schumer said, "Every Kingston resident deserves access to safe affordable housing, and I am proud that the Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, that I fought hard to expand, has supplied the millions needed to build these dozens of new affordable homes for our seniors. I applaud Governor Hochul and RUPCO on the completion of Landmark Place, and will keep fighting to get every dollar of federal support needed to lay the foundation for a brighter and more equitable future in the Hudson Valley."
State Senator Michelle Hinchey said, "As we work toward long-term solutions to address the housing crisis in Ulster County, it is imperative that we create stable housing for our community members who are most in need while delivering supportive services to address the underlying challenges that often perpetuate housing instability. Landmark Place is designed to do just that, making sure that we keep our neighbors safely rooted in their community with the help of our partners at RUPCO. I was proud to support this project through our annual State Budget and will continue to fight for the state investments we need to bring more permanent housing into our communities."
Acting Ulster County Executive Johanna Contreras said, "Since the late 1800s, the site of Landmark Place has been a place of caring for the community. We thank Governor Hochul, New York State, the National Equity Fund and RUPCO for providing resources for our community to reimagine this site. These new units, with their amenities, will make a positive impact on vulnerable seniors for decades to come."
Kingston Mayor Steve Noble said, "I am thrilled to see the grand opening of Landmark Place today. Forward-thinking projects like Landmark Place help so many in a community, and we are grateful that this development opened its doors when it's most needed. The adaptive re-use of an architectural gem, supportive housing for seniors and vets, and additional affordable rental units into our critically-low housing stock- this project supports so many of our shared goals in the City of Kingston. We thank Governor Hochul, the New York State Homes and Community Renewal, and our partners at RUPCO for their ongoing efforts to help us provide safe housing for all in our community."
Kevin O'Connor, Chief Executive Officer, RUPCO, said, "Landmark Place combines RUPCO's work to provide supportive housing for our most vulnerable with our capacity to do both adaptive re-use of historic buildings and construct new, innovative buildings. Once again, we are taking a campus built over 150 years ago for the poor and securing that this landmark campus will provide affordable and supportive housing well into the 22nd Century!"
Emily Chen, Managing Director, National Equity Fund, said "At National Equity Fund, we strive to deliver innovative, collaborative financial solutions to expand the creation and preservation of affordable and supportive housing. We are inspired by our partners at RUPCO and their dedication to supporting vulnerable populations and improving communities. Landmark Place is a creative and unique development that blends historic preservation with new construction to deliver exactly what the community needs."
Keith Nisbet, Head of the Community Capital Group, TD Bank, said, "TD Bank is proud to have partnered with RUPCO to provide seniors in the community with a safe place that they can call home. TD Bank seeks opportunities to collaborate to address the growing issue of affordable housing."