The Ulster County Housing Development Corporation (UCHDC) today released preliminary designs for “a new neighborhood of mixed-income, intergenerational and workforce housing” on the site of the former county jail at Golden Hill in Kingston. The concept plan calls for 80 units of senior housing and 80 units of workforce housing that are affordable at a range of 30 to 130 percent of area median income.
The developer selected to design, build and manage the project is Philadelphia-based Pennrose, which has a 50-year history of developing affordable and mixed-income housing, with over 17,000 units in sixteen states, according to information from the county executive’s office. Pennrose plans to work with Family of Woodstock and other locally-based community organizations to provide supportive services to residents on Golden Hill.
“The day-to-day public health challenges of COVID-19 have helped reveal some of the challenges that we have always known were there; now more than ever we must respond to the longer-term impacts of the pandemic,” County Executive Pat Ryan said. “Frontline workers, working full-time to serve and protect us, should be able to afford decent housing. It is not enough to just thank them, we must take care of them like they take care of us. The selection of a developer for this project is a major step towards allowing Ulster County to support those who have heroically served and supported us.”
“Pennrose had the most creative, innovative and responsive proposal and, just as importantly, it was presented throughout every stage of the process by a consistent and candid team of professionals, one with a thoroughly demonstrated track record for delivering on their promises,” UCHDC Member Hayes Clement said. “We were thoroughly impressed with other Pennrose projects in the Hudson Valley, and are confident they will deliver a Golden Hill redevelopment that will set new standards for affordable housing and make its neighbors and all of Kingston proud.”
The development will include a 5,000 square-foot community building, providing gathering and fitness space for residents and space for local community organizations to offer services. All buildings will be constructed to high efficiency levels, utilizing advanced electric heating and cooling technologies and incorporating rooftop solar.
In August, County Executive Ryan announced the formation of the UCHDC in order to develop housing at this location as well as take a holistic view on housing supply throughout Ulster County.
Over the summer, developers submitted concept plans and qualifications in response to a Request for Qualifications released by the County. The UCHDC interviewed proposers, conducted site visits to their other properties, and interviewed housing agencies that previously worked with the proposers.
UCHDC will now negotiate a developers’ agreement with the selected developer that will define the terms of the development process and include an option to purchase the site once site plans are finalized and funding is secured. A public engagement process to evaluate community needs and preferences and develop a final design will begin in early 2021. The process will include environmental reviews and evaluation of traffic patterns and needs around the Golden Hill site.
The developer will be responsible for demolishing the old jail. Construction is projected to begin in 2022, with leasing and occupancy in late 2023.