WinnCompanies, an award-winning national developer and manager of affordable, mixed-income and market rate apartment communities, today announced it has secured the funding for a comprehensive, $137 million rehabilitation of the Pines of Perinton in Perinton-Fairport, NY, preserving the 508-unit, 43-acre community as a key source of affordable housing in greater Rochester for decades to come.
In addition to extending affordability provisions for at least the next 40 years, all 508 apartments will be modernized and designated as Low-Income Housing Tax Credit units for the first time, meaning that all units will be affordable for various income categories. In addition, 26 units will be converted to ADA accessible housing, as required by New York state law—for the first time in the property’s 51-year history. The Pines of Perinton was recently listed in both the New York State and National Register of Historic Places.
“Financing a redevelopment like this is a complex undertaking that requires partnership at every level of government and input from the community,” said WinnCompanies CEO Gilbert Winn. “We’re very pleased to commence the improvements we had planned since we acquired the Pines late in 2019 and to extend the community’s affordability. Once complete, this upgraded development will feature robust community gathering space, services and support. We appreciate the patience and partnership that residents, our staff, government agencies and our funders have shown to get this project to the starting line.”
The work will be conducted as an occupied renovation beginning in the spring of 2023. It is expected to be completed by the fall of 2025.
In addition to financing from WinnCompanies, numerous agencies are supporting and funding the project. New York State Homes and Community Renewal (NYSHCR) and the New York State Housing Finance Agency (NYHFA) are providing tax-exempt bonds, a first mortgage loan and subsidy loans, along with an allocation of federal and state Low Income Housing Tax Credits. The State of New York Mortgage Agency (SONYMA) is providing credit enhancement to the long-term first mortgage financing.
“Preserving our existing affordable housing stock and ensuring that it is in the right hands is as important as developing brand new multifamily projects, said NYSHCR Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas. “This $137 million project will modernize more than 500 homes and keep them affordable for the next 40 years. These are investments that pay dividends for decades—the people who live here now, and the generations who will follow can and will attest to that. We are grateful to our partners who make these complex projects real and for their commitment to our shared future.”
“Through federal and state historic tax credit programs, reinvestment and renovation projects like these can revitalize communities and help address critical current needs, such as affordable housing,” said New York State Historic Preservation Office (NYSHPO) Commissioner Erik Kulleseid. “Historic infrastructure has exciting potential for creative collaborations, and we welcome opportunities to work with teams throughout the state to unlock that potential.”
NYSHCR financing for the $137 million project included $42 million in Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, nearly $14 million in Federal Historic Tax Credits, $5.1 million in State Low Income Housing Tax Credits, and nearly $35 million in subsidy. Additional financing came from $5.3 million in State Historic Tax Credits through NYSHPO, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and Fairport Electric, and the developer.
Designed and constructed by New York State’s Urban Development Corporation (UDC) between 1972 and 1976, the Pines has been designated as historically significant as an example of pioneering affordable housing development, urban community planning policy, and as a model of work by renowned architect Gwathmey Siegel and landscape designer Peter Roland.
“Pines of Perinton was one of the very first affordable family housing developments built in the New York suburbs built by Urban Development Corporation in the early 1970’s. Today, the project is in need of redevelopment, but it remains as an outstanding example of much-needed affordable housing stock in New York State suburbs,” said Richard Crossed, project manager for the UDC from 1968 to 1976 and later president of Conifer Realty in Rochester. “WinnDevelopment is a great company with tremendous experience, and I am sure they will redevelop the property to their usual high standards.”
Bank of America is providing a construction loan letter of credit and has purchased all federal and state low-income housing and historic tax credits.
“Bank of America Community Development Banking is pleased to help finance the preservation and rehabilitation of much-needed affordable housing for families in the Monroe County,” said Mary Thompson, senior vice president of Community Development Banking at Bank of America. “Pines of Perinton is a great example of the impact we can make to help the most vulnerable in our communities and demonstrates our continued commitment to support the communities where we work and live.”
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and Fairport Electric are providing energy efficiency grants. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Town of Perinton, Monroe County, the Rochester and Fairport housing authorities and Five Star Bank all play critical roles in the preservation, rehabilitation, and ongoing services for residents.
“This significant infusion of funding will help improve the quality of life for our neighbors at the Pines of Perinton and secure the future of affordable housing in our community,” said Perinton Town Supervisor Ciaran Hanna. “The Town is supportive of this project, which will address needed building improvements and energy efficiencies at the 50-year-old complex.”
The Pines of Perinton is home to 1,191 residents—more than one third of whom are children. Built on 43 acres, the Pines of Perinton consists of five buildings arranged as a long, snaking two-story complex with each cluster containing its own covered and surface parking areas and both communal and private green spaces. The 420,000-square-foot complex features both flats and townhouse-style housing with studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom, three-bedroom, and four-bedroom apartments. Shared features include an onsite management office, community building, maintenance shops, four laundry rooms, pathways and benches, a pond, playground, and gazebo area.
No households will be permanently displaced during the rehab. Property manager WinnResidential will work with relocation consultant HousingToHome to coordinate moving households in and out of vacant units on site while their apartments are being renovated.
“Access to quality, affordable housing plays an unmistakable role in the safety and wellbeing of our community at large. It is my hope that this renovation will be conducted in a thorough, transparent and expeditious way, with special consideration to the needs of tenants who are currently living there, so that all people who call the Pines of Perinton home can live in an environment that allows them to live healthy lives,” said State Sen. Samra Brouk.
“Access to stable, quality affordable housing is critical to a safe and healthy community. Upgrading and modernizing more than 500 apartments at the historic Pines of Perinton will be a major benefit to our community and give residents the safe and beautiful homes they deserve,” said Monroe County Executive Adam Bello. “Thank you WinnCompanies, all of our state partners and Bank of America for making this possible and helping us improve the lives of hundreds of families.”
WinnDevelopment will oversee the phased occupied rehabilitation, which will be carried out by DiMarco Constructors as general contractor, using designs by The Architectural Team as architect and BME Associates serving as civil engineer and landscape architect.
Renaissance Groups, a certified women-owned consultant based in Rochester, will conduct outreach within the local community to provide access to construction job opportunities, and has partnered with the general contractor to ensure local, minority and women-owned businesses are given the opportunity to bid for work on the project.
“This project is the result of a true team effort that has united state and local housing and historic preservation advocates,” said WinnDevelopment Senior Vice President David Ginsberg. “We acquired the Pines when its affordable housing was in danger of being lost forever, with the specific vision of preserving affordability and giving new life to the complex. I’m extremely proud that, with the support of residents, staff, the community, and our lending partners, this goal is coming to fruition.”
The scope of work features new kitchens, bathrooms and windows for every apartment and new roofs on every building. The rehab will help reduce water and energy usage while improving comfort through the installation of new heating systems, high-efficiency water heaters, ENERGY STAR air conditioners and ventilation fans, LEDlighting, ENERGY STAR appliances, air sealing and insulation, and low-flow plumbing fixtures.
The property’s community building, where daycare, tutoring and other resident services now take place, will be renovated to include a business center, fitness room, and event space for resident use. The space will continue to host local area non-profits who serve the Pines’ residents and families. The re-syndication transaction will generate additional resources for the expansion of resident services at the property, which are coordinated by a full-time WinnResidential staff member in collaboration with residents.
Work to rebuild 19 apartments destroyed during a January 2022 fire is underway and expected to be completed this summer. The new units will meet the rigorous efficiency standards set under the U.S. Department of Energy’s Zero Energy Ready Homes program.
Law firm Nixon Peabody LLP served as legal counsel to WinnCompanies, advising on issues related to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, New York State regulatory compliance, federal and state housing and historic tax credits, financing and environmental issues. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Town of Perinton, the Rochester and Fairport Housing Authorities, and Five Star Bank have all played critical roles in the preservation of this critical rental housing.