Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the start of construction on Mt. Olive Senior Manor which will create 65 affordable apartments for adults aged 55 and older, including 20 apartments with supportive services for individuals experiencing homelessness. The $27 million development builds upon the state’s historic $50 million investment in the East Buffalo community.
“Mt. Olive Senior Manor continues my administration’s commitment to restoring East Buffalo through new developments that offer safe, stable, and affordable homes,” Governor Hochul said. “Senior housing is a critical part of my housing agenda to ensure that New York seniors can stay close to family and loved ones in the communities they call home. I will continue to leverage our extraordinary partnerships with faith-based groups like Mount Olive Development Corporation that build strong communities and connect New Yorkers to the services they need to thrive and live independently.”
Mt. Olive Senior Manor is part of Governor Hochul's $25 billion comprehensive Housing Plan that will create or preserve 100,000 affordable homes across New York, including 10,000 with support services for vulnerable populations, plus the electrification of an additional 50,000 homes.
The development also complements the State’s multitude of targeted investments to address the East Buffalo community's needs in the aftermath of a racially motivated shooting attack at a local grocery store last year.
Mt. Olive Senior Manor is the result of a partnership with the Mt. Olive Baptist Church on East Delavan Avenue. The new three-story building will be constructed on land adjacent to the church and will include 65 apartments affordable to households earning at or below 60 percent of the Area Median Income.
Twenty apartments will offer on-site support services to help residents live independently. Services and rental subsidies will be funded by the Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative and administered by the New York State Department of Health. Services will be provided by People, Inc., also the project’s co-developer.
Residential amenities will include a community room with kitchen, laundry facilities, bicycle storage area, management office, support service offices, multipurpose room, a lounge area, and an enclosed courtyard with walkable space and a patio. The project site is within walking distance of multiple bus routes.
The design incorporates energy efficiency features such as electric vehicle charging stations, Energy Star appliances and lighting, low flow plumbing fixtures, and high efficiency mechanical equipment. The project site underwent remediation through New York State’s Brownfield Cleanup Program.
To support residents as they age, the building will include features such as grab bars, low-reach shelving and cabinets, lever-style door handles, under cabinet lighting, and zero transition showers.
State financing for Mt. Olive Senior Manor includes $13 million in Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits and $3.6 million in subsidy from New York State Homes and Community Renewal. The New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance is providing $4 million through the Homeless Housing and Assistance Program. The construction fulfilled the requirements of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's successful Brownfield Cleanup Program, which is expected to result in $3.6 million in tax credits issued by the New York State Department of Tax and Finance. The Buffalo Urban Renewal Agency awarded $2.9 million in HOME funds.
In the last five years, HCR has created or preserved 4,655 affordable homes in the city of Buffalo.
New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “Mt. Olive Senior Manor will provide 65 senior households with an affordable, comfortable, and secure home to enjoy peace of mind and a good quality of life. Thanks to our partnership with the Mt. Olive Baptist Church and People, Inc., this underutilized property will be given a renewed purpose that will benefit the entire East Buffalo community. Under Governor Hochul’s leadership, we will continue to create more housing opportunities for residents living in East Buffalo and across the entire state.”
New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Acting Commissioner Barbara C. Guinn said, “Mt. Olive Senior Manor will provide safe, affordable housing along with supportive services for formerly homeless older adults in East Buffalo, highlighting Governor Hochul’s continued commitment to funding new permanent supportive housing units. This innovative partnership will help to stabilize lives while allowing residents to age in place, benefitting the entire community.”
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “New York’s Brownfield Cleanup Program is putting hundreds of former industrial sites back into productive use to better serve community needs. Working with our partners at Homes and Community Renewal, New York State is transforming formerly blighted industrial sites and redeveloping underutilized properties to benefit people in Western New York and across the state.”
Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer said, “Every Buffalo resident deserves a safe and secure place to call home, and I am proud to see this substantial investment in both affordable housing and community resources in the East Buffalo community. By using $13 million in federal Low Income Tax Credits, which I worked hard to secure, to create over 60 new affordable accessible apartments for adults over 55 in East Buffalo and offering critical supportive services to members of the community facing housing insecurity, this new development will help our state’s most vulnerable residents live independently. I applaud Governor Hochul's commitment to increasing access to affordable housing in Buffalo and across New York State, and I will keep fighting to increase the supply of housing and create a more affordable and livable New York for all."
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said, “Expanding access to affordable housing options is crucial for New York communities. This housing development will help ensure that we can meet the critical housing needs of seniors in East Buffalo and provide much-needed support services for vulnerable populations. I am proud to support Governor Hochul’s efforts to expand affordable housing for the East Buffalo community and throughout the state.”
Representative Brian Higgins said, “The affordable housing crisis our country is experiencing is particularly challenging for older residents and people with disabilities living in underserved areas. Under this state and federal partnership, we are continuing to invest in a better future for East Buffalo. Thanks to the leadership of Mt. Olive and People Inc., residents will have access to safe and affordable housing that provides the support they need each day to live independently. We are proud to see this project take off as we continue building opportunities in East Buffalo.”
State Senator Tim Kennedy said, "This project marks yet another state investment in affordable housing opportunities, and underscores both Mount Olive and People Inc.'s commitment to fostering community-centered spaces within the City of Buffalo. New York State will continue to support future-focused projects like this one, which will strengthen our neighborhoods and connect residents with the supportive services they need to live full and vibrant lives."
Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples-Stokes said, “Congratulations to Mt. Olive Baptist Church, People Inc., and the entire development team on completing Mt. Olive Senior Manor. This project was a long time in the making, led by the vision of the late Rev. Dwayne Gillison, Sr. and carried out by his son Rev. Dwayne Gillison, Jr. I am proud to join my colleagues and the community to dedicate more new, safe, affordable housing for our deserving seniors. I’d like to thank Governor Hochul and the NYS Div. of Housing and Community Renewal for making this possible on Buffalo’s Eastside.”
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said, "Mt. Olive Senior Manor development continues my administration’s dedication to equitable development and affordable housing in our city. The city is proud to contribute more than $2 million to this project. I thank Governor Kathy Hochul for her support and partnership in my mission to achieve 40 percent affordable housing in our city. I also thank Mt. Olive Development Corporation and People, Inc. This is the second time the city has partnered with Mount Olive on affordable housing and the fifth time we’ve partnered with People, Inc. I’m proud of the work both organizations do, and I’m proud to continue our successful partnership.”
Mount Olive Baptist Church Pastor Dwayne Gillison said, “The decades-long goal is being realized with this groundbreaking! Our 65-unit facility will provide safe and affordable housing for seniors in need in the City of Buffalo. It is anticipated that the residence will be completed in the fall of 2025. We are grateful to New York State, the City of Buffalo, Erie County, the funders of this exciting project, and our elected leaders. TO GOD BE THE GLORY!”
People President and CEO Anne McCaffrey said, “This is an exciting day for us. We were proud to be selected by Mt. Olive to partner in the development of critical housing options, which will contribute to the quality of life for residents in East Buffalo. Affordable housing initiatives are central to People Inc.’s mission of helping people live fulfilling and productive lives. We are grateful to the elected leaders and agencies who have prioritized affordable housing in our community. This project would not be possible without support from the City of Buffalo, Erie County, and New York State with their contribution of HOME, PILOT, OTDA and HCR funds.”