By Abigail Nehring
The housing lottery is open for a pair of new seven-story apartment buildings erected by Mark Stagg over the past 18 months, flanking the north and south sides of the Henry Hudson Parkway Viaduct.
South of the Fieldston Historic District is 6327 Broadway, a 90-unit building that includes a fitness center, laundry room, and parking for 79 vehicles.
Stagg offers one-bedroom apartments for $2,000 to renters earning at least $68,572 — enough to pay for the unit — but no more than 130% of the area’s median income. That’s about $121,000 for single applicants or up to $156,000 for a family of three.
Precision Real Estate Management, which manages 6327 Broadway, said it received more than 10,000 applications for 27 homes in the first two weeks since the lottery opened on NYC Housing Connect. It will stop accepting new applications on September 8.
Not included in the lottery are the building’s remaining 43 units at market rate, where one-bedroom apartments start at $2,075. These units are rent-stabilized, so future rent increases will be set by the city’s rent guidelines board.
Across the underpass is 6375 Broadway, a smaller building with similar features sandwiched between the W Assisted Living and the Van Cortlandt Motel. Units there are 10 to 15% cheaper and the building has gotten a head start on rentals since June 1. Last Wednesday, 15 of the 42 units remained at market price.
The new construction is the work of developer Mark Stagg, whose buildings proliferate across the Bronx and Westchester County. City property records compiled by JustFix and the Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development show that Stagg Group owns 151 occupied rental properties in New York City and was also one of its most greedy eviction-era evictors. pandemic. Since 2017, the Stagg Group has filed evictions against 402 households in the Bronx, according to JustFix analysis, and city marshals have proceeded with 101, the 11th-highest eviction rate per unit for a landlord. of the city during this period.
There were no Marshal evictions at any of Stagg’s properties during the statewide eviction moratorium that ended in January of this year. And there haven’t been any so far in 2022, Stagg said.
The press’s own analysis of open building permits shows Stagg’s expansion. Its rental portfolio will increase to 163 buildings in the coming months, comprising nearly 4,000 homes, two-thirds of which have been built since 2006.
Stagg expects it will take about 90 days to rent the units at market prices in its two new buildings on Broadway, and six months to fill the units rented through the city’s real estate lottery.
The strip of Broadway on either side of the viaduct forms the junction between Fieldston, North Riverdale and Kingsbridge, three neighborhoods that give Community Board 8 its unique urban and suburban character, which planning decisions foreshadowed in the last century and defined in the city zoning Plans.
A stone’s throw away is one of the oldest surviving structures in the Bronx – Hadley House – a farmhouse built in the 18th century and acquired by Joseph Delafield in 1829. They are also not far from the Van Cortlandt House, the oldest Borough building, built in 1748 which is now a museum inside its namesake park.
The two seven-story buildings are the tallest permitted at this location. They take advantage of a zoning rule that allows extra height in exchange for a community center on the ground floor of mixed-use buildings. A daycare is planned at 6327 Broadway.
The Stagg Group and its contractors currently hold municipal permits on half a dozen developments, which will produce more than 500 units in the coming months according to construction plans in public records.
For now, they represent the last of the Stagg Group’s 421-a “Affordable New York” developments, the property tax exemption program ended in June after lawmakers allowed it to expire. For half a century, 421-a has been the largest real estate spending program in the state. It has been in place almost continuously during this time, with sporadic updates, including changes in 2017 that rebranded the program as an affordability program.
City Comptroller Brad Lander led the campaign to end 421-a, which he says has cost the city $1.77 billion in lost tax revenue each year.
“And we’re not getting meaningful affordable housing in return,” Lander said.
He led a series of town halls this spring to hear from New Yorkers on how to make property taxes fairer. lander said The Riverdale Press he sees an opening this year for New York to take on its heavy property tax system as a result of 421-a.
“What it needs to be replaced with is comprehensive property tax reform,” Lander said. “Now we need to commit to building a broad, citywide coalition.
“Albany isn’t in session until January, so basically we have the next five months, and changing, to build on town halls, to build on the press conference we had last month and continue to have more in addition to legislators and elected officials on board.It will ultimately be important to get the governor on board, so there is a lot of conversation going on and a lot of organizing.
For decades, Mark Stagg has been one of 421-a’s biggest hits. It formed the basis of its business model as the Stagg Group undertook ever larger developments, producing thousands of rent-stabilized, income-limited housing units with luxury features like quartz countertops and hardwood floors.
“What makes us unique is the price,” said Tyler Stagg, a recent addition to the family business with his brothers Ryan and Justin. Tyler works with Precision Real Estate Management, which leases units in both buildings on Broadway.
“The developer puts everything he has into these units,” he said. “He puts his heart and soul into it and doesn’t bother about the budget, whether it’s here or on the other side of the Bronx. We are really improving the game.”
In the most popular version of 421-a, landlords are granted a property tax exemption for 35 years in exchange for reserving a certain portion of housing for renters with limited income.
About three-quarters of the affordable housing produced by the program went to people earning a median income of 130%, as will be the case at 6327 and 6375 Broadway in Riverdale.
The figure is set by the federal government and determines income guidelines for many of the city’s affordable housing programs, including former Mayor Bill de Blasio’s zoning initiative Mandatory Inclusive Housing, which allows up to at 115% of the median income of the zone.
“Affordable means income-targeted, so you can target very low incomes,” Sam Stein, an analyst at the Community Service Society, a charity that advocates for more equality in housing.
“To be fair, we see both, but the 421-a is aimed at the high end. And I and a lot of other people have criticized it. They wonder why we call it affordable if it’s for people who earn 130% (median income in the region) and yet the local income is more like 50%.
“It would be great if we had a different zoning standard for true affordable housing,” Stein added. “I don’t think it’s zoning that limits the number of affordable homes, but zoning can help.