Mayor Adams, Partners Urge Albany to Aid Creation of Affordable, Supportive Housing

May 1, 2022

Action by Albany would unlock an important tool to tackle homelessness and affordable housing

Coalition Push follows Mayor Adams’ campaign promise to repurpose underutilized hotels as much-needed permanent housing, latest executive budget sees record housing investment

new York – New York City Mayor Eric Adams today led a coalition of city and state government leaders and union members calling on Albany to unlock a critical tool in addressing the city’s affordability and homelessness crisis to create new affordable and supportive Creating homes for thousands of New Yorkers. Mayor Adams and the group emphasized the importance of S.4937/A.6262, which would make it easier for the city to convert underutilized hotels into affordable and supportive housing.

“We’re facing a homelessness crisis and an affordable housing crisis, but with the help of our partners in Albany, we can work to address both with one tool,” he said Mayor Adams. “By repurposing unused hotels, we can create supportive housing faster and cheaper. We can provide affordable, sustainable housing for families, seniors, and all New Yorkers in need, including our neighbors affected by homelessness. Let’s do that.”

S.4937/A.6262, sponsored by New York State Senator Brian Kavanagh and New York State Chamber of Deputies Steven Cymbrowitz, would facilitate the process by which idle and vacant hotels can become permanent housing. With the right rules, hotel conversions could be a crucial tool in creating affordable and supportive housing that the city needs — affordable housing can be created through conversions for about two-thirds the cost and in one-third the time using down-to-earth construction. The Housing Our Neighbors with Dignity Act, passed in 2021, provided $100 million to facilitate these transitions.

This effort follows a campaign proposal by Mayor Adams to redesign vacant and underutilized hotels and repurpose them for sustainable affordable and supportive housing. It also follows the mayor’s recently announced executive budget, in which he committed $5 billion in new capital to create and maintain affordable housing, bringing the city’s total investment in housing in the 10-year capital plan to $22 billion increase, the largest housing investment in the city’s history.

“We have to get creative when it comes to solving our housing shortage,” he said Jessica Katz, Chief Housing Officer of New York City. “Converting hotels into apartments is a simple but crucial part of the housing solution. We can take over these units and house New Yorkers permanently. And I am proud that our friends in Albany are introducing legislation to do just that.”

“Our housing crisis and our homelessness crisis go hand in hand. That’s why I believe in investing in hotel conversions to repurpose unused hotels to give our most vulnerable New Yorkers the opportunity to find permanent housing,” he said Gary Jenkins, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Social Services. “I look forward to working with both the Mayor and Albany to pass this much-needed law in support of our customers.”

“The city’s housing crisis requires creativity and new tools to build and maintain more affordable housing,” he said New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Adolfo Carrión, Jr. “This legislation is a necessary first step to unlocking the potential for further hotel conversions that can expand the supply of affordable and supportive housing.”

“Reducing cumbersome regulations and cutting red tape are critical to our economic recovery and our ability to address pressing challenges like the housing affordability crisis,” he said NYC Dan Garodnick, Director of the Department of Urban Planning. “We need creative and bold solutions like this to live up to the moment.”

“The legislation that Sen. Kavanagh and I have introduced creates a viable process to address two critical issues facing our city – the lack of affordable and supportive housing and the increase in vacant and underutilized hotel space as a result of the pandemic,” he said Steven Cymbrowitz, member of the New York State Assembly, chairman of the housing committee. “The endorsement of Mayor Adams, city and state officials, and housing and labor rights advocates sends a strong message to Albany that this legislation must be passed in this session to address the urgent affordable housing needs of New Yorkers while protecting the… to alleviate pressure on commercial real estate.”

“All New Yorkers deserve safe and stable housing, and we need to create more flexibility in our zoning and building codes to allow for the conversion of vacant hotels into much-needed supportive and affordable housing,” he said Adrienne Adams, spokeswoman for the New York City Council. “I urge my colleagues in the Senate and Assembly to seize the moment and pass S.4937/A.6262 so we can add this important new strategy to increase the affordable and supportive housing that so many New Yorkers desperately need.” require.”

“Our city is facing an unprecedented housing crisis that requires solution-oriented thinking about how to address an issue so vast that affects every single one of us in every single community throughout New York City,” he said Amanda Farías, Councilor of the City of New York, Chair of the Committee on Economic Development. “The Hotel Conversion Act is doing just that. This is the kind of sensible policy that not only supports and uplifts companies struggling to find a solution, but also supports thousands of workers and their well-paying union jobs. It’s my honor to support Mayor Eric Adams, our state and city leaders, the Hotel Trades Council and all of the businesses and workers who deserve our commitment to making New York City a better place.”

“Good hotels create good jobs. They are responsible neighbors and raise the profile of the tourism industry by attracting more visitors,” he said Rich Maroko, President of the New York Hotel Trades Council. “But failing hotels only provide poverty-level jobs, bring crime to local communities and tarnish the reputation of New York City’s tourism industry. Converting these hotels into much-needed housing is a smart and effective way to help the city, keep our neighbors safe, support tourism recovery, and secure good jobs. I commend Mayor Adams for his leadership and look forward to working with state law sponsors and legislative leaders to make this happen.”

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