Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the completion of the new 96-apartment Azalea Village Phase Two, a $21.6 million affordable housing development for seniors in the Town of Webster. All tenants in the CDS Housing Azalea Village development can take advantage of services at the adjacent Wolf Life Transitions Center, which provides recreation, training, employment and volunteer opportunities, and an indoor therapy pool.
“Quality and affordable housing is critical to the health and wellbeing of every New Yorker, especially our seniors,” Governor Cuomo said. “This new development will not only provide a vibrant and supportive community for older adults, but it will also serve as a smart investment in the area that moves the local economy and the Finger Lakes forward.”
“Investing in affordable housing is an essential part of our plan to strengthen the social safety net across New York,” said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. “Thanks to an unprecedented commitment of resources, more seniors in the Finger Lakes Region will have access to high-quality housing options.”
The 96 new apartments are split between two identical two-story elevator buildings. Eligible tenants are seniors 55 years or older, and 16 of the apartments are set aside for frail elderly people. In addition to the programs offered by the multi-use Wolf Life Transitions Center, project amenities include Energy Star central AC, dishwashers, a computer lab, and outdoor garden space. Rents range from $385 to $954 a month and include utilities. The apartments are affordable to households with a mix of income levels, ranging from 30 to up to 80 percent of the area median income.
HCR Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “Azalea Village Phase Two delivers high-quality homes near the town center in tandem with great recreational, volunteer, and employment training opportunities. The entire Azalea Village development, and the people who call it home, are contributing new energy to the Webster community and helping propel the Finger Lakes economy forward.”
New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli said, “We are pleased to be partnering with the Community Preservation Corporation to invest in affordable housing for seniors in the Town of Webster. As trustee of the state pension fund, securing sound investments for the retirement system’s more than one million members is my priority.”
State Senator Pamela Helming said, “Safe, affordable housing and meaningful recreation opportunities are critical for the success of our community and our neighbors. Azalea Village Phase Two satisfies these needs while giving our senior citizens an enhanced quality of life in a comfortable and secure environment. The additional space for seniors who need extra care and attention will offer terrific support for those who require special assistance. This investment by HCR is important and exciting for the Town of Webster because it will allow CDS Housing to expand housing and recreation opportunities for local senior citizens. I look forward to continuing to work with HCR, the Town of Webster, and the CDS Housing on behalf of our region.”
Assembly Member Mark C. Johns said, “There is no more worrisome concern than making sure there is a place to call home, and I am pleased that seniors in Webster will now have another option in the Azalea Village’s new apartment development on Hard Road. As the cost of living continues to rise in our state, I know more people will be making the decision to downsize and I am pleased we are able to provide affordable housing options to keep seniors close to their families and the communities they call home.”
Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo said, “Today’s ribbon cutting ceremony marks the completion of the second phase of the Azalea Village project and provides affordable, top quality housing for our local seniors. Monroe County is a proud supporter of this project and of CDS Housing as we support stronger families and a stronger community through targeted investments in our local economy and workforce.”
Webster Town Supervisor Ron Nesbitt said, “Congratulations to CDS on the expansion of their campus and for continuing to provide their services to our Webster community.”
Sankar Sewnauth, President and CEO of CDS Life Transitions, CDS Housing’s parent company said, “Azalea Village is more than housing, it’s a home and an opportunity for the people of this community who need it and deserve it most. Our vision and integrated stewardship at CDS Housing will provide some of the most vulnerable community members in Webster with the life opportunities and self-empowerment to live more fulfilling and independent lives. Residents of this new community will have the independence they seek, and the support, access, and peace of mind they deserve.”
CPC Mortgage Officer Miriam Zinter said, “Our senior citizen population is one of the fastest growing, but also one of the most vulnerable. For low-income seniors living on fixed incomes, the ever-increasing cost of rent and other costs of living can create real hardships. Azalea Village Apartments will provide our community’s seniors with safe, affordable housing where they will have access to the services that will allow them to live with dignity. My thanks to CDS Monarch for their partnership and good work, to Commissioner Visnauskas and her team at HCR, and to Comptroller DiNapoli and the New York State Common Retirement Fund.”
Ann Marie Cook, President/CEO, Lifespan, said, “Every single day Lifespan gets calls from older adults looking for affordable housing so that they can remain in the community. In fact, it is the number one issue why people call us. CDS Housing continues to be a leader in developing safe, affordable and inclusive housing so that families can continue to fully participate in all aspects of community living. These integrated housing communities are places of inclusion where people of all abilities can live and pursue the lifestyle they dream of as the reality they deserve.”
The State’s investment in Azalea Village complements Finger Lakes Forward by increasing access to high-quality affordable housing to help residents stay in their community and live independently. Since 2011, HCR has invested $442 million in the Finger Lakes region that has created affordable housing for about 14,650 residents.
HCR’s financing for Azalea Village Phase Two includes federal and state Low Income Housing Tax Credits that generated $13.3 million in equity and an additional $3.8 million in subsidy. The Community Preservation Corporation will provide a SONYMA-insured $2.9 million permanent loan financed through the company’s partnership with the New York State Common Retirement Fund. The Federal Home Loan Bank provided $960,000. Additional financing sources include Monroe County HOME funds, the Wolf Foundation, and NYSERDA.
HCR also invested $8.5 million in Azalea Village Phase One, which was completed in 2015 and is fully occupied.
Today’s announcement complements “Finger Lakes Forward,” the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $6.1 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan – investing in key industries including photonics, agriculture and food production, and advanced manufacturing. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Rochester, Batavia, and Canandaigua as a destination to grow and invest in.
Now, the region is accelerating Finger Lakes Forward with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State’s $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion – and the region’s plan, as submitted, projects up to 8,200 new jobs. More information is available