Apply Now for 269 Income-Restricted Units at Fancy New UWS Development


Image via Waterline Square.

Developers got tax breaks in return for building hundreds of affordable apartments in a fancy new development along the Hudson River from 59th to 61st Street. Now, people can start applying for those units, and preference for half of them will go to people living in the community board district where the development resides: Community Board 7.

Waterline Square, a luxe trio of buildings designed by star architects (or starchitects) is expected to be completed by the end of this year. The city is accepting applications for the income-restricted apartments until December 6. Studios included in the housing lottery will rent for $1,041 a month. Two-bedrooms go for $1,350.


A section from the application.

Tenants in these units can get access to some building amenities, including resident lounges, for free. Other, like the fitness center and basketball court, come for an additional fee.

Apply here.

NEWS, REAL ESTATE | 49 comments | permalink
    1. Chuck D says:

      I really don’t understand why anyone wants to live in a luxury building so far west next to the freeway.

      • A.C. says:

        You’d be surprised. Just look at the entire Trump Place complex (Or what was Trump place.) Or Via West 57. Phase two of Hudson Yards as well. That’s actually prime real estate.

      • John says:

        Duh, for the cheap rent.

      • Glen says:

        I don’t get why they’d want to be so far from public transportation. It’s a mile walk, much of it uphill, to the subway.

        • oh-my-god! says:

          If they thought about it, they wouldn’t!
          At night? .. Low income and no money for taxis fergedabouit!

        • Woody says:

          Have you noticed that there are buses on 57th St that go crosstown and stop at major subway stations? Or maybe you’ve seen the increasing number of people who ride bicycles? The people who take taxis and Ubers? The people who like to walk less than a mile to Columbus Circle?

      • Rob G. says:

        It’s a pretty cool development, check out the plans. Great eateries opening up there too.

        Some of my friends are planning to move into that area because their kids go to school nearby, but we’re staying put further north. I don’t like being so far from the subway.

      • B.B. says:

        Same could be said for Beekman Place, Sutton Place which are right near or even above FDR Drive. Ditto for East End Avenue. Riverside Drive, and Brooklyn Heights Promenade, along increasingly entire shoreline stretching from South Brooklyn through Williamsburg and Greenpoint going up through Astoria, Queens.

        In a word; The Views!

        Now that New York City’s manufacturing/industrial/shipping base is pretty much long since gone (and not really ever coming back), all that waterfront property and or going a couple of blocks in represents a gold coast if you will.

        Historically one reason the wealthy favored Beekman Place, Sutton Place, East End Avenue and even Riverside drive (to a point) was that lack of easy transportation access kept out certain “elements”.

        East End Avenue/Yorkville east of First Avenue for decades remained almost frozen in time due to lack of transportation (aside from buses). The new SAS has changed things and you are now seeing a burst of construction/redevelopment from Second avenue to the river.

        Maybe most weren’t around then and or otherwise are ignorant of the fact Robert Moses won huge praise for covering over the New York Central rail yards/ROW.

        That event helped make possible DT’s “Riverside Plaza” development. That by the way was also called “too far” from transportation or whatever. However things worked out fine.

    2. Sherman says:

      The term “affordable apartment” is an Orwellian term. A more accurate term is “subsidized apartment”.

      The developer received huge 421-A tax breaks in exchange for offering these “affordable apartments”. As such, the city is being deprived of badly needed tax revenue and NYC residents pay dearly for these apartments.

      Creating these low rent apartments in new luxury buildings is – by all accounts – a ridiculously expensive and inefficient way to create truly affordable apartments. In fact, it exacerbated an already bad situation. But hey, DeBlasio can brag he created new affordable housing.

      Schemes like this and rent regulation are the reasons NYC has a perennial housing affordability problem.

      • A.C. says:

        It’s the tactic being used across the city. 570 Fulton, 80 Flatbush, Via 57 West, 606 West 57th Street, some portions of Hudson Yards, the list goes on and on…

        I would ask though, and this is me being curious, what would you do to tackle the housing crisis? I genuinely want to know, and this is out of pure curiosity.

        • neightbor says:

          Abolish rent regulation. Math: more supply leads to cheaper prices. Releasing 100% of rental apartments into rental market would do the trick.
          As a perfect example of failure, look at the projects: built for middle class, used as anything but, aka fraud. Sustained, generational, obvious fraud.

          • dannyboy says:

            “Releasing 100% of rental apartments into rental market would do the trick.”

            You mean just kick the current tenants to the curb!

            …and you use the handle “neighbor.

          • Bruce E. Bernstein says:

            it’s interesting that Sherman is complaining about housing subsidies. if Sherman owns a condo or coop, it is most likely he is getting large federal housing subsidies himself, through the mortgage interest deduction and through federal mortgage insurance. but i guess subsidies to upper middle class and rich people don’t bother him so much.

            as for “neighbor”:

            i love the way some people claim to be knowledgeable about housing economics but ignore basic facts.

            it’s true that a vast increase in supply would decrease housing prices in NYC. but you can’t get that vast increase in supply, at least in Manhattan, without ending zoning laws and constructing super-high rises (tearing down existing housing) everywhere. Not anything any of us except the most extreme libertarians would want.

            As to “ending rent regulation”, which, as Dannyboy notes, means throwing 40-50% of all tenants on the UWS out on the street:

            We have already had the experiment of “ending rent regulation” on the UWS. since approx 2000, about 50% or more of the UWS apartments have exited the rent regulation system and gone to “market rate.” according to the theories of “neighbor” and sherman, this most certainly should have been enough to lower housing prices. But housing prices have skyrocketed. It is because supply is still grossly limited by space and regulations.

            I also note that “Neighbor” complains about fraud by tenants in public housing. Sure, there is some of that, but it is monitored and relatively minor. You want to look at massive tax fraud and other types of fraud and illegal acts in housing? Look at the landlords. for example, the recent Times masterpiece on Fred and Donald Trump.

            Facts are facts.

            • Sherman says:

              Hi Bruce

              I guess you wouldn’t have a mortgage interest deduction being that you got your apartment for pennies in an inside deal.

              Sherm

            • Bruce bernstein says:

              Sherman,

              You seriously think “insiders prices” are 90% or more discounted from the regular price?

              You seem very jealous and angry.

            • Bruce E. Bernstein says:

              by the way, Sherman, of course i have a mortgage and claim the mortgage interest deduction. thus my condo is subsidized.

              but i don’t continually denigrate people who live in subsidized housing, when i realize i live in subsidized housing myself. my beef is not with subsidies, but with the self-righteousness and hypocrisy.

      • Jen says:

        Sherman, guess what? Tax revenue is used for many social and community needs so your taxes are going towards some things you need and other things you may not need but other people do. It is called a civilized society. Look it up.

        • Sherman says:

          Hi Jen

          If you think that giving $1.5 billion in tax breaks per year to wealthy developers in order to house about 20,000 people in luxury buildings is an efficient form of solving our housing crisis then I guess you’re correct.

          Sherm

      • Cato says:

        If you don’t like the way the developer provided for affordable apartments, what you should do is buy a buildable lot and develop it yourself. That way you can decide not to have affordable apartments.

        But if this developer decided to do it that way, it’s not for you to criticize.

        • Bronx Boy says:

          “But if this developer decided to do it that way, it’s not for you to criticize.”

          You treat it as if this is an open and free market, first come, first served. That isn’t the case. There is limited land. There are zoning and building rules. Development has to happen within the rules, which are set by elected officials who represent the majority of New Yorkers. As long as the rules are applied evenly and fairly, it certainly is the place for people who live here to decide what kind of development we want to have.

      • dannyboy says:

        Orwellian is writing that providing affordable housing and rent regulation are the reasons NYC has a perennial housing affordability problem.

        Start making sense.

      • Bronx Boy says:

        They’re “affordable” relative to the median income for the area.

        I’m not sold on this being the best way to go about providing housing that current local residents can afford, but I’m also not sold on the idea that the city has to allow people who aren’t representative of New Yorkers to dictate the kind of housing that gets built.

        • Woody says:

          You would enjoy the benefits of living in a communist country where people are told how to think and what to do by the government.

    3. wombatNYC says:

      Agree with Chuck D – This is West and a really long , uphill walk to the subway.
      Also , They should create higher $$ maximums . A family of 4 making $200K combined it basically lower middle class in this town

    4. A.C. says:

      Can we just take a moment to recognize how beautiful this new development is? Probably the best project going up in the neighborhood right now. It’s gonna look so cool when all is said and done. It’s out of the way, but yet at the same time, it’s not. It’s accessible, in a beautiful location, and the designs of the buildings are stunning. I wouldn’t say this is KPF’s best work, but it’s up there. Definitely Vinoly’s and Meier’s best works, easily. Most of Vinoly’s contributions to the East Side have been pretty bad (432 Park Avenue, and 249 East 62nd street) but this is worlds different, and worlds better.

      Are there potentially better ways to use this space. Maybe, yeah, but what can really go in? There’s already a brand new theater, a two relocated schools, it’s rich in restaurants, it’s got pretty decent transportation access (M57, M31, M12… M66 and M72 if you wanna stretch it.), and it does supply around 1132 units in total, which for three buildings counting 109 stories, isn’t a bad use of space. Also, it looks like there’s gonna be a new park. Question of whether that’ll be open to the public, I think it will be, and I think it should be.

      More affordable apartments wouldn’t hurt, but other than that, I would give this project a 9.5/10

      Best part is, it’s ahead of schedule. Original completion date was June 2019.

    5. Rodger Lodger says:

      I’m not justifying it, but everytime I hear of one of these lotteries for decent housing for low income tenants I picture images from the past of people throwing bread off food trucks to starving jostling crowds.

    6. Eloise-de-Garland says:

      A 20 minute walk to the nearest subway at 59th and Broadway.
      The M.57 bus, when it’s running will get you to 72nd and Broadway. No bus shelters.
      No neighborhood stores, bars or restaurants.
      Perfect for those who love the suburbs. It ain’t New York!

      • Nat says:

        Oui, c’est v’rai!

      • Woody says:

        I guarantee that many people will enjoy living in this area despite that you wouldn’t.

      • ScooterStan says:

        “No neighborhood stores, bars or restaurants.”

        REALLY??:
        1.On W.57th between West End (11th) and the VIA building are 3 restaurants for every income level: an excellent Greek restaurant and two café-type places.
        2. A bit further north on West End this winter there will be a large Morton-Williams supermarket, with lots of prepared food for “take-away” (as the Brits call take-out).
        3. Plus other West End “Mom-n-Pop” outfits: a bagel place, a Chinese-food place, a liquor store, and more.
        4. And there’s always 9th and 10th Ave’s, with a fantastic assortment of ethnic restaurants, and most deliver.

        Re: “Perfect for those who love the suburbs. It ain’t New York!”
        Guess WHAT! Unlike in most ‘burbs’, where one MUST use a car for everything, all those amenities mentioned above, PLUS a great movie-theater, PLUS Hudson River Park, can be reached ON-FOOT, which makes this beautiful new area VERY MUCH New York.

      • geoff says:

        an average, ambling walking pace is three miles per hour. that’s one mile every twenty minutes, or, twenty street blocks in twenty minutes.

        eolise, did you calculate that’s it’s about a mile from that neighborhood to columbus circle?

        i would guess it’s not that far.

      • David says:

        “… The M57 when it’s running”. My daughter went to middle school on West 61st between Amsterdam and West End. On her first day, she was advised by other kids not to bother waiting for the M57. She could walk to West 72nd carrying a heavy backpack and never saw a bus.

        Other middle schools have MTA buses waiting outside for kids to board after school. When questioned, the MTA had no excuses for the M57’s poor service.

        • B.B. says:

          M57 is only marginally slower than the M42 which is one of the slowest buses in city.

          Both suffer from same issues; long routes that must deal with heavy cross town traffic.

          All the double parked cars, trucks, along with endless construction along 57th hasn’t helped matters either.

          Second Avenue Subway has been a godsend. At least if going to parts of the UES you can take the “Q” at 57th and 7th which will get you 72nd, 86th and 96th along Second faster than the M57. From there it is only a two block walk over to York where the bus goes.

          Know it doesn’t solve everyone’s problems, but again it is an alternative to dealing with always slow M57.

    7. A concerned citizen says:

      Many of the WS residents who would benefit from this housing do not have verifiable incomes. That is, they have SSI, which they supplement by selling sunglasses on the street, etc. That they can continue to pay $1600/month for a studio on the WS shows that they have a sustainable income. But it’s not a verifiable one, in the strict sense that the examiners usually shortsightedly demand. And many of them are approaching old age, when they will no longer to do these street jobs that enable them to sustain themselves. This needs to be changed.

      • B.B. says:

        While your statement is true, things actually cut across a much wider demographic.

        There are plenty of seniors on social security and or others receiving some sort of “check” that have side jobs/unreported income. As such they won’t pass muster for these “affordable” housing lotteries.

        We’re talking about seniors or others who work as everything from child minders to dog walkers, and anything in between that pays off the books.

        The screening and vetting process for these low income/affordable units is only slightly less (or maybe more) deep than putting together a board package for any of our very best white glove co-ops or condos. In short a person’s financials are heavily scrutinized, and every single deposit must be accounted.

        This and those who are living “without visible means of support”, loosely meaning their lifestyle just doesn’t match stated household income won’t qualify either.

    8. Chrigid says:

      “The M.57 bus, when it’s running will get you to 72nd and Broadway.”

      where you will fall off the platform onto the tracks because there’s already no room

    9. sadbuttrue. says:

      New York City, former cultural center of the U.S of A is throwing out a few billion dollars to developers to create the impression that there’s still some reason for New Yorkers to want to live here? They’ll be knocking down the Garment Center district soon and hotels can be built in it’s place. Tourists have doubled in size (both literally and figuratively) There’s no room to move, since the beginning of the /00’s. They want us out of here!

    10. JerryV says:

      For those questioning why people would choose to live so far West, I note that people in apartments facing West will have a lovely view of the Hudson. I doubt that the “peasants” renting the cheap apartments will have much of a choice. And by the way, my wife and I took in a movie at the Landmark theatre on West 57th Street this past Sunday. It is a gorgeous theatre. They seem to be building a self-contained small “village” in this neighborhood, so many people will not have to go too far away. My big concern is for mass transportation. I hope that they can add additional bus service but the 7th Avenue subway has already reached its full capacity during many parts of the day.

    11. Casandra says:

      Affordable? the minimum income here is
      $ 37,500 per-year for a single tenant.
      The reason that buildings like the
      Dakota had rooftop living spaces, was
      to allow the “servants” to live within
      travel distance to their work in the
      building. At their pay scale they
      couldn’t have afforded the expense of
      an “apartment” close enough. The
      same was true of most town-houses.
      The help lived up top because nobody
      else wanted to walk up all those stairs.
      This “assisted” rent won’t be enough
      for people in this area who are currently
      living on disability benefits, or on
      social security – ie not the infirm or
      the aged.
      If I earned $40,000 a year,
      I could afford a nice place in
      Astoria or Woodbridge.
      If I earned $ 200,000 a year
      I could buy a condo on the UWS.
      This is nonsense and benefits
      the developers only.

      • B.B. says:

        Here is a dirty little secret.

        Once one is “in” one of these “low income/affordable” units your income can rise without affecting tenancy. If and or when things get anywhere near luxury vacancy decontrol levels, there are ways round that as well.

        The yearly or at renewal income “verification” forms are a joke. City and IIRC federal laws require landlords to collect them from tenants, but again information provided does not make a bit of difference.

        Just as with all other “cheap” RS apartments, someone can score a unit at this building earning $37,500 at the time. Then turn around literally day after singing lease and make more, far more.

        Again this is why RS laws are a joke. They only provide “cheap” housing for those lucky enough to score such a unit. Everyone else must pay market rate or otherwise fend for themselves.

        • dannyboy says:

          B.B. Your disdain for (1) people in low income/affordable units with increasing income, 2) tenants nearing luxury vacancy decontrol levels, AND (3) the Rent Stabilized make you an equal opportunity disdainer.

          Congratulations on your accomplishment. We now know what kind of person you are.

          • B.B. says:

            No, “distain” or whatever; simply pointing out a salient fact that even those who support rent control laws acknowledge.

            Does not matter how one lands into a below market RS apartment, it is highly unlikely it will ever turn over for someone else to benefit.

            Well perhaps up until maybe the 1990’s or so when virtually all apartments were RS, thus people concentrated on finding something they could afford.

            Even the most ardent supporters of rent control laws agree the thing is a farce. It rewards tenancy longevity on a first come/first served basis.

            Someone who moved into a below market rate RS apartment as a struggling recent college graduate can remain decades later even if their income soars. On what planet is that “fair” and how does it create “affordable” housing.

            • dannyboy says:

              I know people who are moving into a Rent Stabilized apartment this week. If someone is willing to look beyond the UWS, there are apartments available. Those apartments are affordable, as are the ones currently occupied. The regulated rents allow the neighborhood to remain income-mixed.

              I don’t know if you favor maintaining the diversity of the UWS. I do know, from many of the comments, that there are a surprising number who prefer it income-segregated or racially-segregated.

    12. Elisabeth Anderson says:

      My rent was $500. When my landlord used NYC Housing Court to steel a home of 40+ years. Those rents are SKY HIGH!!!

    13. Nancy L says:

      There’s the M11 bus that runs along WestEnd Ave and takes one to the Subway at 72nd Street.

      • Anon says:

        The M11 doesn’t run in WEA. It goes.North on Amsterdam and South on Columbus.

      • A.C. says:

        The M57 runs on West End/11th Avenue from 57th to 72nd street. The M12 runs downtown on 11th Avenue from 57th Street to 23rd Street. The M11 runs along 10th/Amsterdam Avenue uptown and 9th/Columbus Avenue downtown.

    14. B.B. says:

      Think some of you are missing the larger picture and whole point of creating low income/affordable apartments in luxury housing.

      As a site devoted to the UWS, long a bastion of liberal/democratic/progressive leaning politics am quite frankly shocked that people just don’t comprehend.

      Starting in the 1960’s or so with various civil rights laws/court rulings democrats wanted to end segregation (racial) by getting minorities into largely white/middle and above areas. Reasons where simple, amenities such as good schools, healthcare and so forth were far better in such areas than “the hood”.

      Whites responded to this “legislation of morality” by packing up in droves and moving to suburbs. There they pretty much recreated what had been in many urban areas though by different means.

      Fast forward to the 1980’s when city/state began offering various tax incentives for developers/LLs to include “affordable” housing they could do so by putting it off site from luxury. So you had housing for “wealthy” going up in Manhattan (below 96th street for most part), with the “low income/affordable” up in the Bronx, way out in Brooklyn or maybe Harlem.

      Either way this perpetuated the same segregation (race, socio-economic, etc…) that came out of various previous efforts.

      Learning from such mistakes you have socialist-democrats like Bill de Blasio and others who weren’t satisfied with status quo. So now city forces developers to include “low income/affordable” on site with luxury *and* they must have access to every single amenity as market rate tenants.

      This achieves many goals but forces buildings and by extension areas to integrate (racially, socially, economically).

      Since so much depends upon where one lives (schools, hospitals/healthcare, libraries, supermarkets, and so forth), forcing “poor” or whatever households into “wealthy” areas will achieve (or so they hope) the goals of original 1960’s and 1970’s civil rights movements.

      If anyone would sit down and but read NYC/HPD guidelines and other media it is quite clear what they are after.