City-funded, church-owned affordable housing complex opens in Fort Greene

Officials celebrate the opening of the new Hanson Place Community Plaza with a ceremonial ribbon cutting on June 5.
Brooklyn Paper staff

Last week, Fort Greene officials inaugurated a 13-story, 104-unit affordable housing building for formerly homeless individuals and households with extremely low to moderate incomes.

Within the first two weeks of opening in January, the lottery for 87 of 104 units received 70,000 entries.

The development, a former orphanage now called Hanson Place Community Plaza, is owned by the The Hanson Place Church Support Corporation. When he was Brooklyn borough president, Mayor Eric Adams secured $2.8 million of the $65.7 million needed to transform the site into a housing development.

And on June 5, officials gathered at the site to cut the ribbon on the shiny new building.

“Hanson Place Community Plaza, in our mind, is a great model for how governments can work hand in hand with the faith community to provide for our neighbors in need at a time when there are limited, affordable apartments,” said Deputy Mayor for Economic and Workforce Development Maria Torres-Springer. “Adding over 100 homes in any part of the city is no small thing.”

A look inside the new Hanson Place Community Plaza.Brooklyn Paper staff

HPCSC now controls the 99-year lease of the land, while Concord Management, a New York-based company, manages the building.

“The church paved a really nice deal for themselves,” said Dan Moran, assistant commissioner for new construction finance at the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development. “This is a huge victory for this neighborhood and we don’t get to come here and say that a lot.”

Rent starts at $532 monthly for studios, and a total of 44 apartments are reserved for families earning 50-60% of the area median income — translating to between $34,149 and $105,060 for households of one to seven people, according to the NYC Housing Connect listingThe building also has one- and two-bedroom apartments. 

At street level, the building has an 8,000-square-foot medical center with affordable healthcare programming open to the entire community. Tenants — the first of whom have already moved in — can also access a 22,000-square-foot community space with terraces and views of Fort Greene’s streets and foliage.

Officials peer out at the view for tenants of the new Hanson Place Community Plaza in Fort Greene.Brooklyn Paper staff

Developers MDG Design & Construction, a leading affordable housing contracting and development firm, was in charge of the renovation. The company has created or preserved 23,500 affordable housing units and is responsible for over $3.9 billion invested in New York City’s underserved communities.

“There is simply no better place in the country that’s better at making sure affordable housing gets financed than New York City,” said Richard Gerwitz, managing director of Citi Community Capital, a partner of the project.