POUGHKEEPSIE — One of Poughkeepsie’s most touted development projects has been recognized by the New York State Homes and Community Renewal’s Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas, who presented the Kearney Realty & Development Group with the New York State Association for Affordable Housing’s (NYSAFAH) top honor for upstate New York on Nov. 14, for its innovative Queen City Lofts development on Main Street in the city.
A diversified development firm with properties throughout Westchester County and New York State, Kearney Realty & Development President Ken Kearney accepted the prestigious award for the mixed-use development that offers affordable rents for artists and other creative professionals during a ceremony at the Yale Club in Manhattan. Based in Baldwin Place, NY, the Kearney Realty Group was also honored earlier this year at Westchester Municipal Planning Federation’s 46th Annual Planning Awards Program for The Lofts on Main, a mixed-use, mixed-income, and artist housing development on Main Street in the City of Peekskill.
“We are incredibly grateful for this award for the Queen City Lofts development in Poughkeepsie. This project and The Lofts on Main in Peekskill share important features that appear to be a winning formula for downtown urban redevelopment,” said Mr. Kearney, President, and CEO of Kearney Realty & Development. “It recognizes the considerable effort of many talented and creative people from many companies and government agencies in bringing this unique redevelopment effort to fruition.”
Kearney Group Vice President Sean Kearney said the development has clearly resonated with the community and has had a tremendous impact. “Since opening in December 2018, Queen City Lofts is fully leased, including all of its 69 residential units, and commercial spaces. We are very pleased with the positive impact Queen City Lofts has had and we are thrilled to be part of the resurgence of the City of Poughkeepsie.”
Mayor Rob Rolison started promoting the city since taking office in 2016 and has seen his vision slowly become reality. “I congratulate Kearney Realty & Development Group for winning this deserving award. The City is committed to growing in a responsible way that addresses the need for mixed-income affordable housing, as this project does. Queen City Lofts is serving as a model, and there is more to come along Main Street and throughout the downtown area.”
Rolison’s sentiments were echoed by Dutchess County Executive Marcus Molinaro who said “Queen City Lofts not only embodies the renaissance the City of Poughkeepsie is undergoing, but the project also plays a vital role in Dutchess County’s efforts to address concerns such as affordable housing and the revival of our cities. We thank Kearney Group for its foresight – developing a formerly vacant lot and transforming it into a cornerstone of the City’s revitalization – and we celebrate the recognition its interest in our community has garnered.”
An innovative mixed-use, mixed-income and artist housing development, Queen City Lofts consists of fifty (50) affordable lofts targeted for tenants at fifty (50%) to sixty (60%) percent of Dutchess County’s median income, with a preference for those involved in artistic or literary activities, nineteen (19) middle-income lofts, and six (6) commercial spaces. Recently, Zeus Brewing Company established a restaurant and brewery in Queen City Lofts top floor with a seasonal rooftop bar and dining area offering commanding views of Poughkeepsie and the Hudson River.
Kearney’s proven financing plan has developed strong relationships with stakeholders including the Regional Economic Development Council. “Queen City Lofts provides needed housing and commercial space in downtown Poughkeepsie and we were proud to support the project with $300,000 in Regional Economic Development Council Capital Grant funding,” said Donald Christian, co-chair of the Mid-Hudson Regional Economic Development Council and president of SUNY New Paltz. “I congratulate Kearney Realty & Development and Hudson River Housing on this award and look forward to seeing how this project will enhance the revitalization of the City of Poughkeepsie and the local economy.”
To achieve this unique mix of residential and commercial uses, Kearney Group utilized a creative funding package using a combination of State and Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, Brownfield Cleanup Program Tax Credits, Dutchess County HOME funds, Community Investment Funds, Tax Credit equity from Raymond James Tax Credit Funds, Empire State Development funds, a mortgage from The Community Preservation Corporation, deferred developer fee, as well as private equity from the Kearney Group. Queen City Lofts was one of the first developments in New York State to receive funds from the Middle-Income Housing Program, administered by New York State Homes & Community Renewal and is also a Gold LEED Development.