Once operated as an illegal hotel, Park 79 will now house elderly and formerly homeless New Yorkers who would otherwise be kicked out of town; Project FIND, a non-profit organization, will provide on-site services to seniors

Park 79 offers seniors a home in a vibrant walkable neighborhood, steps from Central Park and cultural institutions, including the Museum of Natural History

NEW YORK, June 3, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Fairstead, a vertically integrated, purpose-driven real estate company committed to sustainability and the creation and preservation of high-quality housing, the New York Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD ) and Project FIND today announced the launch of the Park 79 Real Estate Lottery on the NYC Housing Connect website. Through HPD’s Seniors Affordable Rental Apartment (SARA) program, the 100% affordable housing development will provide 77 residences to seniors with an area median income (AMI) of 50% or less, including 24 homes for formerly homeless people. All units will be backed by a project-based Section 8 contract, under which residents pay only 30% of their income in rent. The lottery will take place August 5, 2022 and the building should be finished this summer. Photos of the apartments can be downloaded here.

“Park 79 provides highly affordable senior housing and essential support services to formerly homeless households on the Upper West Side, through our Senior Affordable Rental Apartments (SARA) program. We encourage seniors to apply for these apartments through Housing Connect or to contact our Housing Ambassadors for assistance,” said Commissioner HPD Adolfo CarrionJunior. “Thank you to Fairstead, Project FIND, all of our partners and our team at HPD for their work transforming an illegally operated single occupancy building into an affordable development that will now allow seniors to age with dignity and the support they deserve. ‘they deserve.’

“We are proud to partner with HPD and Project FIND to launch the lottery for Park 79 and support some of the most vulnerable members of our community,” said Brett MeringoffManaging Partner, Development at Fairstead. “Park 79 aligns with Fairstead’s core philosophy of providing affordable housing in high opportunity areas and providing residents with supportive services to enhance their lives. At Park 79, this means ensuring that people seniors receive the care they need to continue living independently in a neighborhood they love.Having started this project in 2020 at the start of the pandemic, Park 79 demonstrates Fairstead’s creativity and innovation to see the opportunity in a distressed property, as well as his commitment to solving our country’s affordable housing crisis.”

“Project FIND is thrilled to partner with Fairstead and be the non-profit owner and service provider of Park 79,” said Associate Executive Director of the FIND Project Marc Jennings. “The launch of the Housing Lottery brings us one step closer to our goal of providing additional affordable housing opportunities for our deserving seniors. For over 50 years, the FIND Project has helped thousands of low-income and moderate and formerly homeless.with a variety of awesome programs so they can live independently.Our professional and dedicated team is ready to help the residents of Park 79 so they can age in place, develop new friendships and enjoy the activities and beauty of the Upper West Side.

“Park 79 couldn’t open at a better time for countless West Side seniors who are aging in place and want to be able to continue living in their community, but need support to do so. As housing prices continue Skyrocketing across the city, seniors living on low fixed incomes are desperate for safe, stable and affordable housing, and my office works with many of them. David GilchristProject FIND has expanded senior housing options across the West Side and beyond, and I’m proud to represent this new development in the New York State Assembly. Park 79 should serve as a model for the city: when the will is there, we have the capacity to transform former hotels into 100% affordable and supportive housing units for low-income and formerly homeless seniors,” said Member of the Assembly Linda B. Rosenthal (D/WF-Manhattan), Chairman of the Committee on Social Services.

“I commend Fairstead, Project FIND and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development for bringing this important project to life. As the number of homeless and housing unstable older people grows, we must do everything in our power to develop deeply affordable housing,” said Council Member Gale A. Brewer (D-06). “I was proud to support this project as Manhattan Borough President by successfully advocating for a variety of public funding sources. I look forward to welcoming seniors to the newly renovated building.”

The building was a single room occupancy (SRO) zoned for permanent residential use which the previous owner was illegally using as a hotel. The Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement (OSE) issued multiple violations in 2015, and in 2016 Fairstead acquired the property and began major renovations.

“OSE works to ensure building owners follow city and state regulations designed to keep housing available and affordable for New Yorkers, and is proud that its enforcement has once again transformed an illegal hotel operation into permanent accommodation,” said OSE Executive Director Christian Klossner. “OSE applauds the efforts of HPD, Fairstead and Project FIND in creating affordable, high-quality housing for New Yorkers in need.”

The newly renovated development includes 77 studio apartments, indoor and outdoor common areas for residents as well as space for Fairstead’s non-profit partner, Project FIND, which will provide on-site services with two social workers. All apartments are supplied with electricity.

Residents will also have access to programming from the Hamilton Senior Center of Project FIND on West 73rd Street.

Seniors can apply for Park 79 on the Housing Connect website or request a paper application by sending a self-addressed envelope to: Fairstead Management c/o: Park 79, 560 Lenox Avenue, New York, NY 10037. Those who need help with the application can work with HPD Housing Ambassadorscommunity service providers in New York City that help people prepare for and apply for Housing Connect affordable housing lotteries.

Park 79 is one of many residential buildings cited for illegal use by the City and therefore intended for affordable housing, most recently in the neighboring building Upper West Side 258 West 97e Streetpart of a $1.1 million Transaction between the City and an illegal hotelier.

Fairstead is a vertically integrated, goal-oriented real estate developer specializing in the creation of high-quality, sustainable housing. The company’s national footprint includes more than $6 billion in the identified assets and pipeline. With offices at New York, Marylandand Caroline from the south, the Fairstead team manages more than 90 communities across the country and manages its comprehensive real estate platform, which includes acquisitions and development, venture capital investments in accessory technology, design and construction, energy and sustainability, property management, marketing and leasing. The company also administers one of the most proactive community impact programs in the industry to provide on-site support services to residents. For more information, visit www.fairstead.com.

The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) is the nation’s largest municipal housing preservation and development agency. Its mission is to promote quality housing and diverse, thriving neighborhoods for New Yorkers through lending and development programs for new affordable housing, preserving the affordability of existing housing stock, enforcing housing quality standards and educational programs for tenants and building owners. For more details, visit nyc.gov/hpd and for regular updates on HPD news and services, connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @NYCHousing.

FIND projectThe mission of is to provide low to middle income and homeless seniors with the services and support they need to enrich their lives and live independently. Today, Project FIND operates three supportive housing residences that house approximately 600 people and four senior centers with over 3,000 members. Our members and residents range from the healthy and active to the frail and housebound to the homeless. For all of these men and women, the FIND Project is an essential resource, providing housing, meals and programs that help people meet the challenges of aging by encouraging community involvement and healthy living.

Media Contacts
Fairstead: Jovana Rizzo, [email protected] & CJ Mayer, [email protected]
HPD: [email protected]
FIND project: Kathleen Fitzgibbons, [email protected]