NEW YORK (AP) — New York City created or preserved more than 24,500 affordable homes last year, breaking a record for the nation’s biggest city, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Tuesday.
The previous record was just over 23,100, in 1989.
De Blasio, a Democrat re-elected last year, has made affordable housing a centerpiece of his two mayoral campaigns. He promoted the milestone at the Cypress Hills Senior Residences in Brooklyn.
The city invested more than $1 billion in affordable apartments last year. The effort mostly preserved affordable homes — over 17,300 of them. Another 7,200 new ones were created.
Nearly half the homes financed rent at levels affordable to a residents making about $33,400 per year, or $43,000 for a family of three.
The city has preserved or created over 87,500 affordable homes in the last four years.
“Not only did we generate the most affordable housing in a single calendar year – a full half of those homes will serve extremely and very low-income New Yorkers,” said Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Maria Torres-Springer.
Outreach efforts include a new housing website and ads promoting resources to help people apply for affordable housing, fight eviction and freeze their rent.
The mayor’s Public Engagement Unit has made over 280,000 door knocks and phone calls to tell residents about their rights and how to get repairs, legal services and rental assistance.