Mengqing Chen, MLA I 2017
Organization: NYC Housing Preservation and Development (NYC HPD), New York, NY
Sponsor: Harvard Club of New York Foundation
” This week I made several site visits in Brooklyn and the Bronx with a project manager. The projects were all in different construction phases. Some of the projects were almost complete with interior finishes; some were still under construction.
One interesting project was the Navy Green in Brooklyn. Located just opposite the navy yard, it is becoming an increasingly popular area in Brooklyn. The project encompasses the whole block, in which there are 23 lots. The Navy Green consists of condos and townhouses. It is one of a few projects HPD financed that includes market rate townhouses and housing units. The project manager is responsible for monitoring that the contractor follows the codes and standards, as well as workers’ safety during construction.
Another project was located on the south side of Brooklyn near Coney Island, an area that was heavily damaged during Hurricane Sandy. HPD financed rebuilding efforts through the Sandy Recovery Program. Because of the high flood risk, the renovated houses must be elevated on pillars. If not, the ground floor cannot be occupied by any tenants. The elevated houses, sitting among 1-2 story houses, makes for a very strange neighborhood image. The HPD planning team is working on a solution to change the strange composition. They plan to have all of the elevated houses confined to several blocks, and will keep the other houses within the remaining blocks.”