Making its largest financial commitment in its history, the AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust will pump $134 million into the historic Penn South Cooperative to ensure 2,820 housing units in Midtown will remain affordable for an additional 20 years. The union’s pension capital will be used to renovated the 10-building complex and create 610 union construction jobs in the process. Wells Fargo has partnered with the union on the loan.
“Our investment is helping sustain a vital urban community that has been home to thousands of working families for almost 50 years,” said John J. Sweeney, chairman of the New York-based HIT. “We cannot afford to lose even one unit of workforce housing due to its age, deterioration or financing difficulties.”
The average one-bedroom coop costs $535,000 in Manhattan in comparison to Penn South’s $63,000 per unit cost.
Penn South was developed in 1962 by the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, now UNITE HERE. The development is one of the largest ones to emerge from the 1950s movement to create limited-equity cooperative housing for moderate-income people in New York. Spearheaded by the United Housing Foundation, Penn South’s current residents include many active and retired union members. The project’s property management staff is represented by OPEIU Local 153 and the janitors and porters are members of SEIU Local 32 B-J.
In this article
- American Federation of Labor - Congress of Industrial Organizations
- Canadian Labour Congress
- Change to Win Federation
- Economy of the United States
- Housing cooperatives
- John Sweeney
- Office and Professional Employees International Union
- Penn South
- Service Employees International Union
- Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD
- United Housing Foundation
- Wells Fargo