L+M Lands $179M in Financing for Marcus Garvey Extension Project 


 L+M Development Partners has closed $179 million in construction financing for its Marcus Garvey Extension Project—an affordable and supportive apartment complex in Brownsville, Brooklyn, Commercial Observer can first report. Part of an expansion of the Marcus Garvey Apartments, proceeds will fund the development of three new buildings at the project, comprising 348 units and 13,400 square feet of commercial and community facility space. 

Development of the buildings—at 215 Livonia Avenue, 169 Livonia Avenue and 449 Chester Street— was funded through a mix of public and private sources, including a construction loan and tax credit equity from Wells Fargo (WFC); New York State Housing Finance Agency tax-exempt bond financing; Low Income Housing Tax Credits, HFA’s Supportive Housing Opportunity Program subsidy; HFA’s New Construction Capital Program subsidy and HFA’s Middle-Income Housing Program subsidy. 

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“Wells Fargo is honored to partner with L+M Development Partners on another affordable project serving the needs of the people of New York City with the financing for the expansion of Marcus Garvey Apartments, which will contribute much-needed additional affordable and supportive housing to Brooklyn,”  Alan Wiener, head of Wells Fargo Multifamily Capital, said in prepared remarks.Wells Fargo is committed to providing financial solutions to support the development of affordable housing in areas where there are the biggest needs.” 

The three new buildings are part of a seven-site extension plan to develop 700 new affordable housing units and 30,000 square feet of commercial and community facility space on vacant development sites within the Marcus Garvey complex. L+M acquired the 625-unit Marcus Garvey Apartments—a former Mitchell Lama complex—in 2014, undertaking a sweeping redevelopment of the project. 

“Our longstanding commitment to the revitalization of the Marcus Garvey Apartments is centered around community building and improvements for our residents and the surrounding neighborhood, and this addition of 348 affordable apartments, retail and community facility space builds on that commitment,” said Ron Moelis, CEO and Founding Partner of L+M Development Partners. “Just as we’ve partnered with local organizations to create a youth clubhouse and urban farm at Marcus Garvey, this project will build on the momentum of our past work and bring much needed affordable housing and amenities to the neighborhood. And by working with Win and the Osborne Association, this project will also provide critically needed high-quality supportive housing and services for formerly homeless and formerly incarcerated New Yorkers. Thanks to our financial partners for their support as well, and we look forward to cutting the ribbon on these three new buildings at Marcus Garvey in 2022.”

The building at 215 Livonia Avenue will rise seven stories and include 96 residential units, 52 of which will be supportive housing units. Women in Need (Win), which provides safe housing and services to help homeless women and their children, will provide services for the supportive units. The building will also include 6,000 square feet of retail and community facility space. 

“Win is committed to ensuring women and families have the support and resources they need to permanently break the cycle of homelessness,” Christine Quinn, president and CEO of Win, said. “This facility will be a major step forward in combatting the city’s homelessness crisis, offering vulnerable families the opportunity to move into brand new apartments designed to provide stability, independence, and a fresh start.” 

The eight-story buildings at 169 Livonia Avenue and 449 Chester Street are set to include 78 units and 174 units, and 5,400 square feet and 1,750 square feet of community facility space, respectively. Fifty-two of the Chester Street’s building’s units will be dedicated to supportive housing, specifically for residents reentering the community after incarceration, with services and programming provided by The Osborne Association

“The Osborne Association is pleased to be working with L+M to provide affordable housing and supportive services to older adults returning to our community from incarceration,” Elizabeth Gaynes, President and CEO of The Osborne Association, said in a prepared statement. “Since its founding in 1933, Osborne has provided programs, such as our Elder Reentry Initiative, that seek to mitigate the harm of crime and incarceration on individuals, families and communities. This project will be a welcome extension of such services by addressing the urgent need for stable housing for older adults who have served their time and transformed their lives, but often travel a well-worn path from prison to New York City shelters.”

Curtis + Ginsberg Architects designed 215 Livonia Avenue and 169 Livonia Avenue, while Bernheimer Architecture designed 449 Chester Street. Construction of the two Livonia Street buildings is expected to wrap in 2021, while the Chester Street building will be completed in 2022.