NEW YORK CITY — Queens Development Group, a joint venture between Related Cos. and Sterling Equities, has broken ground on the first phase of a 2,500-unit affordable housing project in the New York City borough of Queens. The project includes some units reserved for seniors.
The project, named Willets Point, will be the city’s largest affordable housing development in 40 years, according to the joint venture. Wells Fargo has arranged a total of $360 million in financing for Phase I of the development, with a $236.5 million construction loan and $123.5 million Low-Income Housing Tax Credit investment.
Phase I of the development will feature two mid-rise buildings offering a combined 880 units of affordable housing. Forty percent of units will be reserved for residents earning at or below 60 percent of the area median income, and 15 percent of units will be set aside for tenants that formerly experienced homelessness.
Amenities will include a landscaped inner courtyard, laundry facilities, lounge space with access to outdoor terraces, bicycle storage and ground-floor retail space. The development will also include infrastructure investments like new streets, signage, sidewalks, trees, lights, drainage, stormwater management, water hydrants, sewers and utilities.
Future components of the development will include a 650-seat standalone public school, New York City’s first soccer-specific stadium, over 100,000 square feet of public open space, a 250-room hotel and additional ground-floor retail. The City of New York has committed over $420 million to the development in full, including support for the affordable housing components and infrastructure improvements.
Phase I of the project is scheduled for completion in 2026. The joint venture plans to break ground imminently on 220 additional affordable housing units for low-income seniors. A development timeline for the project in full was not announced.
“What we are seeing in Willets Point is the future of New York City — a future in which all New Yorkers can afford to live in a safe apartment that is close to a good school, good-paying jobs, outdoor space and great public transportation,” says New York City Mayor Eric Adams.
Based locally in the Hudson Yards development in Manhattan, Related Cos. focuses on commercial real estate development.
Great Neck, N.Y.-based Sterling Equities is a diversified, family-run group of companies with a portfolio focused on real estate, sports and media.