Rehab is On for Penn South, New Baptist Temple

By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations Housing Investment Trust (AFL-CIO HIT) will invest $134 million in the rehabilitation of Penn South, a co-op located between 8th and 9th Avenues and East 23rd [...]

The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations Housing Investment Trust (AFL-CIO HIT) will invest $134 million in the rehabilitation of Penn South, a co-op located between 8th and 9th Avenues and East 23rd and 29th Streets in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood. Under AFL-CIO HIT’s redevelopment initiative, the co-op’s affordability will be guaranteed for another 20 years. More than 600 union construction jobs will be created throughout this project, reports Citybizlist.

Penn South was designed by architect Herman J. Jessor and completed in 1962 as part of a program meant to create limited-equity housing cooperatives for New York residents with limited incomes. The property totals 2,820 units almost entirely occupied by active and retired residents alike.

In other residential real estate news, another redevelopment initiative will convert a 40,000-square-foot historic New Baptist Temple in downtown Brooklyn into a mixed-use facility consisting of housing units and church space. The temple’s interior was seriously damaged by an electrical fire in July last year.

According to The Wall Street Journal, church officials have chosen to focus on adding high-end residential and commercial space, while a distinct part of the facility would continue to operate as a church. Although the hunt for a developer is still on, the Journal reports that the original façade and church structure will be preserved. Built in 1893 on Schermerhorn Street, the building was Brooklyn’s first Baptist church. In recent years  it also served as a gathering point for people dealing with substance abuse.

Photo credits: Jim Henderson