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The Renaissance At Lincoln Park Including New Boys & Girls Club Breaks Ground Before The Holidays

The project will feature 179 workforce housing units, a state-of-the-art Boys & Girls Club facility and expanded parking

New Rochelle — With 23 days left, in a year when everything from Small Businesses crippled and the entire sports world shutting down due to COVID, the Renaissance at Lincoln Park in New Rochelle broke ground virtually, Wednesday, December 9th.

“This new community development is an exciting step forward for New Rochelle, offering affordable high-quality housing, coupled with the most significant new youth services facility in generations,” shared New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson. “I am grateful for the public-private partnership that is bringing this positive vision to life.”

The Renaissance at Lincoln Park is billed as a transformational community-driven and centered development embodying the resilient spirit of the Queen City and its current evolution. The new project will create 179 units of best-in-class workforce housing, a state-of-the-art Boys & Girls Club facility and 350 parking spaces for residents, community members, and park visitors.

“The Renaissance at Lincoln Park is an example of the incredible power of public and private partnership,” said Reverend Michael J. Rouse, President of Guion Renaissance Housing Development Finance Corporation. “By listening to the community, allowing its needs to drive the vision and scale, and ensuring our involvement at every level, our team has ensured that this project will be transformative for New Rochelle, benefiting the most vulnerable and shaping the future of our City for generations to come.”

The NRP Group, a vertically-integrated developer, builder, and manager of multifamily housing, leads a joint-venture development partnership between the New Rochelle-based non-profit Guion Renaissance Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC), and Kensworth Consulting. The Boys and Girls Club of New Rochelle and The City of New Rochelle are project partners. The total development cost of the project is $97 million and is financed by multiple funding sources. The New York State Homes & Community Renewal provided significant support including $48 million of tax exempt bonds issued by its Housing Finance Agency. Red Stone Equity Partners provided tax credit equity syndication with Bank of New York Mellon as the investor and letter of credit provider. The developer also provided equity for the project with additional support from the Interfaith Development Corporation and the Westchester County Housing Infrastructure Fund.

“This groundbreaking is a special one,” said Jonathan Gertman, Vice President of Development at The NRP Group. “In a time of incredible uncertainty, we were able to push through in partnership, and make the dream of this project a reality. The Renaissance at Lincoln Park was born out of a community driven vision and we are honored to be a part of bringing it to fruition. It is our sincerest hope that this project will be a home for generations of the New Rochelle community to live, grow, and thrive.”

Kenneth Plummer, CEO of Kensworth Consulting echoes Gertman and feels it will not only be good for New Rochelle but will set the standard for other cities.

“By offering exceptional affordable housing and numerous community benefits, including space for local children to learn and grow, the Renaissance at Lincoln Park will help strengthen and support the City of New Rochelle,” said Plummer.  “As a community-minded developer, I’m confident that this project will set the standard for inclusive, community-centered development and power the sustainable growth of cities across the nation.”

Developers promises that community is at the heart of the Renaissance at Lincoln Park project, which features a sleek, modern facility for the Remington Clubhouse of The Boys & Girls Club of New Rochelle. The organization provides a safe space, mentoring, and quality programs that empower local vulnerable youth to excel in school and build great futures. The Club serves more than 3,675 children and teens every year and the new 23,400-square-foot clubhouse will allow the organization to serve more needy children and families and amplify its impact. The new facility will include a gym, basketball court, recording studio, demonstration kitchen, administrative offices, and generously-sized rooms designed for work and play. 

While the developers and elected officials from the city, county and state all spoke at the virtual groundbreaking, Black Westchester wanted to hear what some of the resident though of the project. We reached out to Kwamain Dixon a resident and activist from New Rochelle.

“As a resident and activist from New Rochelle where I was born and raised in the Heart of District 3 “The Forgotten District” The current Remington Boys and Girls Club where I frequent as a youth coming up is long over due for rehabilitation. This building has helped to keep our community whole over the years. This is where we come to celebrate our children as they played team sports, Oldies but Goodies parties, Holiday Events, a place for community to gather to discuss different issues and solutions to those issues, a place we came to for many repast for those we lost in the community,” Dixon shares with Black Westchester. “This building has served as the backbone to our District and our Youth and their families. This new state-of-the-art Boys and Girls Club in my opinion is a very good thing and is what our community needs. This will give our children the space and opportunities to evolve into whatever they desire. The Leadership of Nate Adams, Arron Williams and the rest of their amazing staff who always put the needs and interests of our children first with failure not being an option. The new apartment building that is also apart of this plan is desperately need in New Rochelle where we have what they call affordable housing, but really isn’t. We need buildings and projects like these to help ensure that life long residents who aren’t as well off as others in the city still can stay and live in the city where there family ties and roots are. The Gentrification that is going on in New Rochelle is disheartening because the poor blacks are going to become extinct in New Rochelle if we can’t get anymore mixed units like these. This building goes by 30%-80% AMI [Area Medium Income]. We need more development like this because what they putting up now calling affordable makes you ask affordable to whom if your Civil Service workers can’t afford your affordable housing then how affordable is it really? I am one who fights and advocates for what’s right for the people who I live amongst, and who I suffer along with. Nobody wins until we all win.”

Vivian Spady of Big Viv’s Foundation that holds annual Back To School and Christmas Toy drives at the Boys & Girls Club also agrees it is a good idea as well.

“I think the project is a good idea and a new state-of-the-art facility is much-needed for our kids to be able to come and be safe,” Ms. Spady shares with Black Westchester, “as long as no plans change that and it’s built with the good foundation of the Boys & Girls Club.”

Lutonya Russell-Humes, the executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of New Rochelle (BGCNR) looks forward to the new facility.

“The Remington clubhouse has always been a very neighborhood-centric space that community members feel a tremendous sense of pride and ownership over,” said Russell-Humes. “The clubhouse is definitely due for an upgrade, and we look forward to the new, larger space that will let us bring in even more of the community and build on the generational investment of the community into this space.”

Councilwoman Yadira Ramos-Herbert who succeeded Jared Rice when he was appointed to fill the vacant City Court Judge position, also understands what the BGCNR means to her constituents in District 3 also believes in the project which is part of the Comprehensive Plan for the Lincoln Avenue corridor.

“The Boys and Girls Club of New Rochelle is an essential institution to the children and families in District 3, and we are thrilled to see a new and improved clubhouse,” said the Councilwoman shared with Black Westchester. “Members of District 3 are thrilled with the affordable, high-quality housing that will be located right in the heart of the Lincoln Avenue Corridor. My heartfelt thanks to everyone who had a hand in making this project possible.”

As a teen I have spend a lot of time at the Remington Boys & Girls Club as well. I have seen the decades of deterioration of the building personally. Even if developers are rebuilding the BGCNR for the good press that comes with it, I believe the residents and especially the youth with benefit from it. Stay tuned to Black Westchester as we follow this project until completion.

The NRP Group has been named the 2020 NMHC #6 Top Multifamily Builder in the U.S. and #7 Top Multifamily Developer, and Affordable Housing Finance has named The NRP Group #4 Top Affordable Housing Developer. The NRP Group is a three-time recipient of the National Association of Builders Multifamily (NAHB) Pillars of the Industry award for national “Development Firm of the Year.” NRP is leveraging its decades of practice by also providing construction and property management services to outside owners and developers. For additional information, visit https://www.nrpgroup.com/.

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About AJ Woodson (2279 Articles)
AJ Woodson is the Editor-In-Chief of Black Westchester and Co-Owner of Urban Soul Media Group, the parent company. AJ is a Father, Brother, Author, Writer, Journalism Fellow, Rapper, Radio Personality, Hip-Hop Historian and A Freelance Journalist whose byline has appeared in several print publications and online sites including The Source, Vibe, the Village Voice, Upscale, Sonicnet.com, Launch.com, Rolling Out Newspaper, Spiritual Minded Magazine and several others.
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