Homes for Heros
Rockland County, NY
Rockland Homes for Heroes is developing 14 affordable housing units for formerly homeless veterans on a decommissioned army base, Camp Shanks, in Orangetown, NY. The base was the largest debarkation point for troops leaving the East Coast for Europe during WWII.
The structures pictured above were designed and built by the Army Corps of Engineers in the late 1950s, and were used as barracks housing, company offices, and a dining facility. The site was donated to Homes for Heroes in 2018 by the US Department of Health and Human Services with the provision that it be used to serve veterans.
The Leviticus Loan is supporting the cost of selective demolition and rebuilding of three former Army barracks. Once complete, the project will total 13,952 square feet on an eight-acre parcel. All units will be accessible to people with disabilities and include storage, washer/dryer units, and Wi-Fi. A community room will be available to all tenants.
Multiple state and federal agencies were involved in this effort, and deed restrictions further complicated the deal. Leviticus played a “but for” role, bridging funds allocated by New York State but not available for disbursement during the construction phase of the project.
“Homelessness is life without a future. It breeds loneliness, despair, hopelessness, depression, addiction and – too often – suicide,” said John Murphy, Chairman, Rockland Homes for Heroes. “We’re fighting to give our veterans a chance to create a meaningful life for themselves outside of uniform.”
Castle III at a Glance
of Supportive Housing
Philip’s Academy Charter School
Philip’s Academy Charter School (PACS) in Newark, New Jersey, has been providing a rigorous and nurturing educational program to families from low income and urban areas for more than three decades. What began as St. Philip’s Academy in 1988 later became the first independent school in New Jersey to convert to a charter public school.
PACS serves a diverse student body using a hands-on, technology infused educational environment that embraces differentiated instruction and individual attention. They are replicating this successful model about 15 miles north of Newark in Paterson, the state’s 3rd largest city.
According to the New Jersey Community Development Corporation, 26% of all Paterson residents live below the national poverty level, and 38% of these individuals are under 18. More than 50% of the city’s adults in poverty only have a high school diploma or less.
PACS is working to turn those statistics around, and assembled an experienced team to fund their plan to turn a vacant parcel of land into a new 63,000 square foot facility serving 675 students.
The Leviticus Fund is happy to be part of the effort, with a $1.5 million participation in a leverage loan from New Jersey Community Capital. Building Hope, a 501(c)(3) founded in 2003 to close the educational achievement gap by giving students access to high quality charter public schools, is the project sponsor. Additional financial support is being provided by FARR Education, PNC Bank, and the Community Development Trust.
The core values of Philip’s Academy are that love fuels everything, every child has a spark of genius, the right environment unleashes potential, and that we can always find a better way. The Leviticus Fund is happy to help further those values with a loan that continues our commitment to lending in support of charter public schools.
Philip’s Academy Charter School
Safe, stable, affordable housing was first recognized as a human right in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Still, too many of our neighbors struggle with homelessness or housing insecurity.
The Leviticus Fund closed a $3.85 million pre-development/acquisition loan to a nonprofit partner, RUPCO, for the purchase of a former Quality Inn in the Town of Ulster, just north of Kingston, for conversion to permanent and emergency affordable housing.
The project will convert the 145-room hotel to approximately 81 apartments, including studios and 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom units. According to RUPCO, the need to address homelessness in Ulster County is clear and urgent. As of December 2021, there were at least 313 people who were homeless in Ulster County (including 63 families, 76 single men, and 58 single women.)
The effort will focus on moving homeless families and individuals out of long-term hotel/motel placements and into permanent supportive housing. Non-profit RUPCO will provide onsite supportive services for resident families and individuals, including help in accessing public benefits, job training, life skills training, behavioral health, food access and nutritional support, recreational activities, and on-site daycare. Small buses will transport residents to appointments and for recreational purposes. The onsite indoor pool will be available for therapeutic purposes. The grounds will contain developed green space for passive and active recreation.
This project is one of the first to make use of New York State’s “Housing our Neighbors with Dignity Act” or “HONDA” outside of New York City. The measure, passed in 2021, facilitates the acquisition of distressed hotel and commercial office properties for conversion to 100% affordable or supportive housing.
This loan directly supports the first goal of the Leviticus Fund’s 2022-24 Strategic Plan by deepening our investment in supportive housing.
affordable and supportive units
Monroe Senior Housing
According to AARP, “By 2030, one in every five Americans will be over age 65, and our nation will face a severe shortage in appropriate housing to meet their needs. As people age, they need housing that is structurally and mechanically safe and that accommodates people with disabilities.”
Connecticut Housing Partners (CHP) has secured an acquisition loan of $650,000 from the Leviticus Fund to develop a 49-unit supportive and affordable housing complex for low-income seniors and formerly homeless people.
Founded in 1990, CHP’s mission is to create and sustain innovative housing, revitalize neighborhoods, and enhance the quality of life for low- and moderate-income residents of Connecticut. They have a strong track record of building high-quality, affordable housing for families, seniors, and once homeless households and providing supportive services.
Monroe, in eastern Fairfield County, Connecticut, serves as a “bedroom community” for Bridgeport, New Haven, and Stamford. It encompasses a total area of 26.3 square miles and as of the 2020 Census, 19,492 people lived in Monroe.
According to an Affordable Housing Plan adopted by the Monroe Town Council in May, only 92 housing units out of nearly 7,000 (1.33%) meet the state’s definition of affordable housing. Connecticut established a 10% threshold for affordable units in every municipality, and Monroe needs 599 units to meet that figure.
The project’s 49 units will provide seniors in Monroe with affordable housing options that are extremely hard to find.
Monroe Senior Housing
of affordable and supportive housing
PROJECT RENEWAL’S COMPREHENSIVE VISION
New York, NY
Ending the cycle of homelessness takes creative thinking. Project Renewal, Inc. develops housing that brings the services at-risk New Yorkers need under one roof – their roof.
Project Renewal provides a home and care to people barred from other options due to ongoing substance use. Since the 1960s their approach remains unchanged – they see beyond the stigma of mental illness or addiction to their clients’ potential.
Project Renewal had a vision for their New Providence Women’s Shelter on East 45th Street in Manhattan but they had to find a pre-construction lender to make it happen.
The Leviticus Fund stepped up to make the largest unsecured loan in its history – $2,263,409 – based on the financial strength of the guarantors.
After pre-construction expenses are paid with the loan from Leviticus, the City of New York will transfer ownership of the property to Project Renewal. The obsolete building will be demolished and replaced with a handsome new structure with 171 beds for homeless adult women, compared to 130 in the existing shelter. In addition,129 new, desperately needed, permanent affordable rental units will be created, including 78 supportive units for extremely low-income people experiencing homelessness.
Finally, the ground floor space will be occupied by a federally qualified community health center to serve shelter clients, building residents and other people with low income.
According to Project Renewal, “We continue to break new ground in architectural design, bringing together our experts to create sustainable spaces and services that help end the cycle of homelessness.”
The Leviticus Fund is pleased to help finance the creation of a safe and supportive environment where women can get the assistance they need to rebuild their lives.