Mayor Adams is soon expected to roll out a housing plan that will stake out a path for building 30,000 new affordable apartment units in the city every year, his top adviser on the issue said Monday.
The adviser, Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Adolfo Carrión, revealed the ambitious goal while testifying before a City Council hearing examining the housing component of Adams’ $ 99.7 billion executive budget proposal unveiled last month.
“Our administration is fully committed to funding the production of affordable housing and following the need,” Carrión said, adding that Adams will announce the new plan within the next few weeks.
On the other hand, Carrión said the Adams administration does not expect to be able to meet the construction goal this year. Instead, an estimated 16,000 units will be added to the city’s affordable housing stock in 2022, according to Carrión.
“We will come up short,” he said.
Some council members were skeptical about the viability of Adams’ 30,000-units-per-year push, given that his executive budget proposes a relatively modest funding boost for HPD, which is tasked with maintaining affordable housing in the city.
“Creating or preserving 30,000 units of deeply affordable housing every year is an incredibly laudable goal. I’m not sure it’s possible at these funding levels, “said Democratic Brooklyn Councilman Justin Brannan, who chairs the council’s finance committee and oversaw Monday’s hearing. “The council wants to be a partner here so that’s what we’re trying to figure out. What will it cost and how do we get there? ”
Adams’ executive budget blueprint – which is subject to negotiations with the Council before a final version must be passed by July 1 – floated a $ 5 billion capital housing investment over the coming decade, equating to an increase of roughly 500 million per year on top of 17 billion previously allocated over that period.
That falls short of Adams’ pledge on the campaign trail last year to spend $ 4 billion every year on housing.
Carrión testified that the administration is keeping an open mind about beefing up housing spending further in future budget cycles in order to eventually make good on the mayor’s campaign promise.
Toward the end of Monday’s hearing, Carrión conceded it’s a high bar to build 30,000 new affordable units every year with the spending levels laid out by Adams’ executive budget.
“I don’t expect that we are going to be at 30,000 units per year any time soon,” he said. “Maybe at 20,000 next year and we keep inching up. It’s really an aspirational number. “