Hotel? Or Apartments? Yes

Newman ArchitectsMarkeshia Ricks PhotoThe latest upscale building planned for downtown — on an Elm Street parking lot — isn’t an apartment building. It isn’t a hotel. It’s both.

The developer who transformed the former Union & New Haven Trust Co. at the corner of Church and Elm streets into a 137-unit residential building called the Union has plans to transform the next-door lot at 85 Elm, currently used as a surface parking, into a combination apartment building and extended-stay hotel.

Under plans submitted by Kuperberg’s Cooper Church LLC/Elm Cooper LLC., that surface parking lot would become five floors of apartments and a floor of extended stay hotel rooms on top of a two-floor parking garage. The City Plan Commission is scheduled to take up a site plan review next week for the project during its August meeting.

David Kuperberg, who is based in New York, said the building is the “future development” that he hinted at during last summer’s celebration of the opening of The Union, which he also noted is 100 percent occupied.

He said a few factors drove this next development move: New Haven’s continued growth, changes to zoning rules, and a demand for extended stay options downtown.

He’s not the only developer who is seeking to create hotel space downtown—Stamford developer Randy Salvatore is building a boutique hotel at the corner of George and High streets, while a Chicago-based outfit is doing the same at the Duncan Hotel on Chapel Street.

“Our hunch about New Haven turned out to be true,” he said. “It is a wonderful, growing city.”

The plans that have been submitted to City Plan calls for 105 apartments—85 studios, 15 one-bedrooms, and 5 two-bedrooms—and one floor of 21 extended-stay rooms with a mix of studio, one, two and three-bedroom suites. The studios range in size from 400 to 542 square feet.

The new building will feature a lobby and resident services area on the first floor. Check-in services for guests will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The hotel floor also will have an on-site property manager and guests will receive basic turn down service. The hotel rooms will be fully furnished. The new building also will feature a roof top terrace for use by both residents of The Union and the new building and hotel guests.

The Union already has an outdoor terrace. Guests and residents of both buildings will be able to use both spaces. They also will have use of the new parking garage, which will continue to serve Wells Fargo customers, fulfilling that existing contract.

The Union benefits from a change in parking requirements that reduced the number such a development is required to have from 145 to 100. It also allows those spaces to be outside the maximum walking distance of 300 feet. That meant that the developer could provide parking for tenants in other city owned garages. Further changes to the parking requirement now allow those spaces to be as far as 1,000 feet away.

According to a narrative submitted with the application, these exceptions and changes mean that The Union has surplus parking and the new garage at 85 Elm St. will only increase that surplus in the developer’s estimation.

The developer is now in talks with the city’s parking authority to reallocate those spaces previously reserved for tenants of The Union. The new parking garage at 85 Elm St. will have 57 parking spaces, up to 50 of which will be reserved for Wells Fargo customers. Spaces not used by the bank will be made available to tenants and guests, which could mean even more surplus parking in the view of the developer.

But why only one floor of extended stay hotel rooms if the demand is so high?

“We’re in the building and apartment business,” Kuperberg said. “We’re not in the full building, hotel business.”

He said the Union, however, has been getting requests for leasing options that are shorter than the standard one, to two-year leases that it offers.

“There is good pent up demand,” he said.

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posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 11, 2017  9:18am

Downtown New Haven will soon be nothing more but a elite district. Out of reach for the poor and working Class.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 11, 2017  9:46am

My bad.I forgot this one.Soon the working class and Poor people of New Haven will be like this thanks to Sell out Judas Goat Leaders.

More than half of L.A.‘s 1 million poor households live in unaffordable or substandard rentals, study says

Los Angeles and New York City top the list of U.S. cities with the most poor people laboring under heavy rent burdens, living in substandard housing, or both, according to a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Affairs study..

More than half of Los Angeles’ 1 million very poor households, or 567,000, spent more than half their income on rent or resorted to undesirable housing in 2015, the study said.

In New York City, 44% of the very poor also struggled to afford housing, but because there were more of them — 1.8 million — the number falling into what the study called the “worst-case housing needs” category was higher, 815,000.

More than half of very low-income people in Miami, Phoenix and Riverside also struggled to pay the rent, the study said.

posted by: anonymous on August 11, 2017  10:26am

3/5 I can’t wait for downtown to become even more of an “elite district”, with these parking lots filled by buildings that are much denser than the one proposed here, and real estate values ideally double or triple what they are now. 

New Haven desperately needs the resulting property tax revenue, and will need it even more in the coming years.  The libraries, schools, and parks are already deeply underfunded.

Also, because of the reval process, if property values were to triple downtown, everyone else in the city would get a big tax cut.

posted by: 1644 on August 11, 2017  10:31am

Are there any tax abatements with this project?  Or, since it appears to be being built as of right and not have an affordable housing component, will it be added to the Grand List immediately?
3/5’s: residential uses are pretty new to downtown, so with the exceptions of homeless on the Green and Yalies in their colleges,  no one lived downtown.  It was nearly exclusively office and retail in the 20th century.  Even in the original colonial division, lots on the Green were reserved for the better heeled settlers. It’s not as if poor folks lived on quality row in the 19th century(until they were displaced by the library and courthouse). The surviving federal homes on Elm are pretty nice structures, too.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 11, 2017  10:55am

posted by: 1644 on August 11, 2017 10:31am

3/5’s: residential uses are pretty new to downtown, so with the exceptions of homeless on the Green and Yalies in their colleges,  no one lived downtown.

Not True. when I move here from New York in 1992.Some of my friends live on Orange ave.They had a studio apartment over a store.At the time the apartment rent was 500.00 a month.Now that apartment is going for over 1,000 dollars a month.There is also a apartment building around the corner.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 11, 2017  10:59am


My bad. It is Orange st.Not ave.

posted by: RobotShlomo on August 11, 2017  11:50am

Sounds like Anonymous is proselytizing more trickle down economics, where wealthy residents move in, and then we all sit back and HOPE to benefit from their largess, while pretending that the next collapse just isn’t over the next horizon. If it isn’t already there I don’t see New Haven becoming more “elite”, I see it becoming more and more like Gotham City in Batman. Where you have upper crust who shelter themselves in luxury high rises, and the poor are all relegated to Crime Alley and we pretend they just don’t exist while ignoring the system inequality that caused it in the first place. We’re really back to “redlining”, only now we do it with higher rents.

I know the developers love to say that “we have a housing shortage in America”. The reality is we don’t. We have enough empty housing in America to make sure that NOBODY was homeless.

We’ve created this situation where much like China where they’ve spent a decade building empty cities, developers just keep on building because the banks just keep on lending, and as long as they keep on building they think they’ll immunize themselves against the upcoming crash when supply far outstrips demand. They won’t. And keeping those houses and apartments empty to artificially inflate their value is only going to exacerbate the problem.

Like I keep saying, the banks are writing these loans like they were before the crash (which they caused) so guys like Randy Salvatore can build more Khruschyovka apartment blocks, and when the crash comes they’ll get nice fat government bailouts. New Haven always has a bad habit of moving from one recession to another, without a recovery period in between. The crash is coming. And I hate to think what’s going to happen this time.

posted by: Brian McGrath on August 11, 2017  11:51am

Is someone suggesting that the solution to poverty is to invite all those poor people in LA
to come and live on New Haven’s vacant parking lots?

posted by: RobotShlomo on August 11, 2017  12:06pm

@Brian McGrath

Nobody is suggesting that, however when you have developers who just want to suck as much money out of the market they can while keeping these units empty to deliberately inflate the value of new buildings, and banks are more than willing to help them do so and cause a crash in the process, don’t stand around and say “Gee, I wonder how this happened? Now where’s my bailout?”.

posted by: Kevin McCarthy on August 11, 2017  12:54pm

1644, the owners will presumably take advantage of the tax phase-in. This applies independently of any zoning relief, i.e., whether the building is as of right or requires a variance. The rationale for the phase-in is that it typically takes a couple of years for commercial property to rent up. In practice, New Haven’s recent housing developments such as The Union, have rented up quickly; retail/office developments, not so much.

posted by: Kevin McCarthy on August 11, 2017  1:13pm

3/5ths, the rent at your friend’s apartment increased a bit faster than inflation, but only a bit. $500 in 1992 is the equivalent of $886 today, based on the consumer price index.

But you’re right on the larger issue of affordability. For many low and moderate income people, the rent is simply too damn high. This project won’t help anytime soon in this regard, although it will have the other benefits Anonymous cites. In the near term, projects like this will constrain rents in neighborhoods like East Rock. It will be years before they affect rents in poorer neighborhoods.

posted by: 1644 on August 11, 2017  1:20pm

Kevein: Thanks.  Given how vigorous the market is, it would be wise to examine if the tax abatement policy should become les generous.  The sooner new projects are added to the Grand List, the sooner other taxpayers get some relief.
3/5’s: I am not sure where on Orange St your friends lived.  Most of Orange/Livingston I don’t consider downtown, just the “ninth square” portion, which was pretty desolate in the latter 20th century, especially after the Coliseum was razed. Frankly a lot of it is still desolate.  As for a rent increase from $500 to $1K, that pretty much in line with rent everywhere, or lagging.  I think most rents everywhere have more than doubled in the last quarter century.
Robot;  Once, New Haven made things like guns and shirts for the rest of the nation and world.  But Gant went bankrupt, Marlin moved to North Haven, Winchester/Olin was pushed out by union demands and post Vietnam drop in demand,  Sero moved to Branford and then went out of business. New Haven is left with a port, and Yale.  Most of its economic activity is the result of Yale,  which pulls in money from its endowment, outside grants, and tuition, and spends it primarily in New Haven.  A century ago, a worker, immigrant or otherwise, could seek work at a gun or clothing factory.  Today, he is limited to Yale itself, and the service businesses which survive off the spending of Yale’s better paid employees: some banking, and a lot of restaurants and retail.
I am not sure where you get the idea that developers are leaving units empty.  The Union’s owners say they are full.  Unrented units generate no income.  From what I read, these new places are filling up quickly, although they are depressing values in East Rock and Westville, which were previously the only acceptable neighborhoods for those with options.

posted by: LookOut on August 11, 2017  1:40pm

for years, downtown New Haven skewed to heavily to low income.  The results were poor.  We need a a mix.  Higher income residents pay more taxes, use more services, and support more local businesses.  A rising tide lifts all boats.

posted by: LookOut on August 11, 2017  1:41pm

Markeshia - any word on how this can be fast tracked?

posted by: RobotShlomo on August 11, 2017  3:52pm


The point is that anyone who says they are building new apartments as a response to “demand” is being misleading. The rents have “doubled” because after the sub prime 2008 crash, those who were foreclosed on were forced out of their homes, and into apartments. So the “market” responded by increasing the rents merely because they could because of the “demand” that had been artificially created. Now I see the same conditions repeating themselves, but instead of McMansions and McCondos developers are building McPartments. But hey, it’s all blue skies and green fields. At least until the units are either boarded up, or rot off their foundations.

The Union owners claim that the apartments are “full”, but for how long can they keep building before there’s another economic downturn? And those places are “filling up”, but at some point those renters will realize they can get a place in Hamden or Branford for a third of what they’re paying. A study reported on by the LA Times conducted by Harvard University says that “Millennials” are now leaving the cities for the suburbs.

And those “higher income residents” that Lookout is referring to don’t pay the property taxes that homeowners if they are renting, and pay primarily sales taxes which are actually what’s referred to as a regressive tax, meaning that the poor pay disproportionately more.

The city of New Haven never seems to air on the side of caution. The conditions are right another crash, all that’s needed is for someone to throw a lit match.

posted by: GroveStreet on August 11, 2017  4:22pm

Yes, Three-Fifths, every time I walk through the Green and see people pissing on trees and begging for change, I think, “This is so elitist.”

posted by: Atwater on August 11, 2017  4:39pm

The issue is not just rising rents, but also the stagnation of wages and the severe problem of underemployment. The increased economic segregation of New Haven (and other cities/towns across the U.S.) will only lead to social unrest. Gentrification is not just the improvement of a neighborhood, but it is the systemic displacement of the working-class/working-poor.

posted by: AverageTaxpayer on August 11, 2017  4:53pm

More studio housing for transients? And the units seem to be getting smaller and smaller.

Is the hotel part of this combo apartment building/hotel just a ruse to squeeze more units through zoning. What happens if and when the hotel portion fails?

There used to be rules to devlopment. (Parking, maximum units, green space, etc.) these rules governed the development of Ninth Square, the Liberty, 360 State, College & Crown, etc.

Now it seems the New Haven powers-that-be, (Gilvarg, BofA, Nemerson), have thrown those rules out the window in favor or what? Oh yes, more transient housing.

If the market is so red-hot for downtown, city-living, why not push developers to create housing that people might want to live in for the long term?

There is a continuum here, and we’re slipping away from real city-planning to quick hits for both developers, and the Grand List.

posted by: Kevin McCarthy on August 11, 2017  5:23pm

Atwater, I agree with your first few sentences. Even if your inflation-adjusted rent has stayed the same, if your income has gone down in real dollars, you’re in trouble.

But gentrification is not necessarily the same thing as displacement. There are places where both have occurred, most notably in New York. But East Rock was a predominantly middle-income neighborhood when I moved here, 30 years ago. Even though the Corsair tenants probably have higher incomes than the neighborhood average, the project displaced no one directly and few if any people indirectly.

posted by: Jonathan Hopkins on August 11, 2017  5:37pm

In the early 20th century there were many residents - mostly single men - living in single room apartments above stores in the blocks south of Chapel Street. Those rooming houses and tenements were largely demolished during the Church Street Redevelopment Project or converted (back) into offices. While very few people lived Downtown in the second half of the 20th century due in no small part to relocation and displacement during urban renewal, for most of the city’s history people have lived within the Nine Squares.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 11, 2017  5:42pm

posted by: GroveStreet on August 11, 2017 4:22pm

Yes, Three-Fifths, every time I walk through the Green and see people pissing on trees and begging for change, I think, “This is so elitist.”

How about the Yale Hispters who come out the Clubs Downtown pissing on trees and behind peoples cars?As far as begging for change just say no.

posted by: robn on August 11, 2017  5:46pm

No housing is being bulldozed to build this project.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 11, 2017  6:03pm

posted by: Brian McGrath on August 11, 2017 11:51am

Is someone suggesting that the solution to poverty is to invite all those poor people in LA
to come and live on New Haven’s vacant parking lots?

The Solution is Like Newark New Jersey is getting ready to do Use Inclusionary zoning that require a given share of new construction to be affordable by people with low to moderate incomes.New York City has similar requirements.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 11, 2017  7:52pm

What these owners of these buildings are not telling you is that they are full because most of the apartments have two and three room mates to help with the rents.

posted by: Esbey on August 11, 2017  7:56pm


The “scare quotes” that you put around your “ideas” are not helping your “argument”.

posted by: Kevin McCarthy on August 11, 2017  10:30pm

LookOut, as Markeshia noted the project is going in for site plan review. This is the last phase of the planning approval process. Typically, the changes made at this point are modest.

posted by: 1644 on August 12, 2017  4:08am

3/5’s So what is people have roommates?  When I was in my 20’s, I shared a house in Branford with 2 other guys, getting to live in a nice neighborhood I could not otherwise afford.  Later, I lived with my future wife, renting a condo in Southington, both of us contributing to the rent.  In the 1970’s, when I was in school, Yale grad students did not have the comfortable stipends they have now.  As a result, they lived 4-5 in working class apartments on Orange Street or Mansfield, both of which were considered grad student ghettos, run-down housing populated by bohemian academics.  Today, grad students get $1K/mo for housing, which means they can rent a new apartment with only   a single roommate.  Thus, by increasing stipends, Yale has doubled or more the demand for grad student housing in New Haven.

posted by: Brian McGrath on August 12, 2017  10:03am

Gentrification is not real and is a red herring as a housing issue in this city. Some posters here are biased against anyone with a dollar and go to great lengths in their posts to convince us all not to let rich people live in New Haven. Over 30,000 poor people have displaced an equal number of not so poor people in New Haven over the last 35 years. This is a bad thing for any city. The stupid answer is not to require a low income housing component in every new project in New Haven. Go after Cheshire and leave New Haven alone. No more low income population is needed here. The answer is to lighten up on the misguided and obsolete zoning density rules applied in all the wrong places and let your city grow in numbers. If there are people willing to spend their money to live here and increase New Haven’s population to 175,000 is there something wrong with that?

posted by: wendy1 on August 12, 2017  12:11pm

I’ll believe it when I see it.  Meanwhile Mr. K is still trying to rent out space on Church St.  His rents are beyond greedy and yes, I have toured 2 of his properties.

posted by: HewNaven on August 12, 2017  1:39pm

This is awesome!  Every time apartments are added my landlord automatically reduces my rent and I get a sweet tax break from the city. Cuz supply and demand yo. That’s how it works.

posted by: JCFremont on August 12, 2017  7:20pm

The center squares of New Haven’s 9 squares is kind of worrying that Manhattan’s Fifth and Park Avenue’s are becoming “gentrified.” For a good part of New Haven’s history the city center has been its core. More important is how the more residential area’s will fare. If young transient renters prefer a brand new state of the art apartment, even if it means multiple roommates, or a quirky multifamily apartment in East Rock. Funny thing about East Rock when I moved to New Haven, people said the better rents where east of Whitney, then East of Orange Street, then Nash and the rediscovery of Goatville.
Neighborhoods in New Haven have changed for better or worse, been repurposed or change ethnically maybe even politically. Those big mansions on Orange Street where once owned by the wealthy, same with Wooster Square, Hillhouse Ave. City Point etc. I laughed when St. Ronan residents wanted to landmark the area, the only thing historical is that it’s the most recent block with big houses.
Interesting study that RoboShomo points out that “Millennia’s” are now looking to suburbs. Darn people keep changing their patterns just in time for the projects that developers and their political partners seem to be zoned and completed just in time for them to head toward obsolescence’s. Atwater (good to see you back) mentions the wage stagnation, it is important. People in the middle are trying to stay in the neighborhood of choice, When taxes or rents go up more income goes to housing. Those on Section 8 are in a Catch 22. If say then take a second job income based housing means a rate increase.

posted by: 1644 on August 12, 2017  8:53pm

1. The developers won’t need fat bailouts.  Their loans are non-recourse to shell companies.  Just as Schiavone escaped to a comfortable life when his leveraged empire collapsed,  Salvatore et al. will be fine.  On the other hand, some of their lenders may be, as Schiavone’s was, in trouble.  Schiavone’s bankruptcy caused the collapse of a local bank, and the FDIC needed to bailout those who had lent the bank money, especially its depositors.  So long as the market rate rents support an operating profit, I think we can count on Yale to bu and maintain them as it did with Schiavone’s.  Heck, the university might even operate some at a loss in order to land bank. l The biggest, traditional reason students reject Yale is its New Haven location.  Together compete, Yale has been doing all it can to gentrify the area around its campus. 
2. As millennials age, they will start families, and like every generation before, they will want a yard for their kids and a low-crime neighborhood.  Those who cannot afford private schools will want , good schools, too.  Until then, however, urban rentals give them flexibility, vibrant neighborhoods, and freedom from maintenance worries.  The short-term, flexible nature of rentals is good for workers in biotech, where companies come and go, medical residents, and non-tenured faculty.  Others, such as DINKS, spinsters, and empty nesters may enjoy the low maintenance lifestyle and the ability to walk to work, to the myriad cultural offerings of New Haven, its fine restaurants, etc. With Peapod and the proximity to everything else, a couple may be able to get by with only one, or even no cars, saving a lot of money.  The key to keeping this demand is crime.  As we saw in NYC,safety trumps all else.  More muggings like that of the elderly Yale prof, or killing or rapes happen outside of the hood, and “white” (bourgeois) flight will return.

posted by: robn on August 12, 2017  9:05pm


Very funny. If supply and demand doesn’t govern prices then what does?

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 12, 2017  10:55pm

posted by: 1644 on August 12, 2017 8:53pm

The key to keeping this demand is crime.  As we saw in NYC,safety trumps all else.  More muggings like that of the elderly Yale prof, or killing or rapes happen outside of the hood, and “white” (bourgeois) flight will return.

Safety trumps all else alright.What we saw was stop and frisk.Which now New York is paying out big lawsuits.The same thing will happen downtown New Haven

posted by: 1644 on August 12, 2017 4:08am

3/5’s So what is people have roommates?

They have to have roommates due to the high rents.I live in the west village in new york on bleecker street in 1971.I had two bed rooms.I paid 700.00 dollars a month no room mate..I use to hang in the Caffe Reggio on MacDougal Street.My friend and his wife is still there.they pay 850.dollars due to rent control..He told me that hold building now have two and three room mates.due to the high rents.In fact the greedy landlord told him I will give you one million to move.He said no.The greedy land lord start messing with him and other Tenants.The only thing that is saving them is his son is a nypd police captain and he told the poilce officers on that beat to keep a eye out on the tenants How come there is no rent control and rent this state?

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 12, 2017  11:22pm

posted by: Brian McGrath on August 12, 2017 10:03am

Gentrification is not real and is a red herring as a housing issue in this city

I see why you say Gentrification is not real and is a red herring as a housing issue in this city.Are you the same Brian McGrath who said bring back the use of eminent domain? Are you the same Brian McGrath, who is the chairman of the city’s Redevelopment Agency, wants to use the power of that agency to do. the redevelopment of the Ninth Square and now development in parts of Chapel West, Dwight and Whalley Avenue, and possibly other parts of the city.This sounds like gentrification to me.

posted by: Kevin McCarthy on August 13, 2017  11:16am

RS, of course the new residents will pay property taxes, albeit indirectly. Do you seriously think landlords are altruists and will eat this cost in a tight market?

posted by: 1644 on August 14, 2017  8:42am

Jc & Robo:  For what it is worth (not much), NAR says aging millenials are opting for “urban” neighborhoods.  This would include places like Milford and Branford centers, with close-in housing, access walking distance to trains, shops, restaurants, and and open spaces nearby (the greens).  A new apartment complex based on this premise is coming to Branford, replacing the old Atlantic Wire factory.  The same developer did a complex by Milford harbor.  New Haven has scads of similar housing, such as lower Livingston Street, and much of Westville.  If prices push up there, more adventurous buyers might return to Dwight/George, and to the Front Street area of Fair Haven, areas where the crack epidemic killed resurgent gentrification in the late 1980’s/90’s.  Edgewood, a fashionable neighborhood in my youth, might also see a resurgence, although it lacks the integrated coffee shops, etc., of other neighborhoods.  (3/5’s would call this a second wave gentrification, although it’s not like these neighborhoods were built for the poor, they simply filled a vacuum created by the comfortable moving to the suburbs.)

posted by: 1644 on August 14, 2017  9:21am

3/5’s: We don’t have rent control or rent stabilization because long-term renters are a small portion of Connecticut’s population.  Larger cities are required to have rent review boards, and some smaller towns, like Clinton, have them as well.  Regarding rent control, would you be happy to receive the same pay as you did in 1970?  To have the selling price of your real estate limited to what it was in 1970?  If no, why should your friend’s landlord be limited to charging a 1970’s price.  If every NYC dwelling where priced at 1970’s prices, not landlord could afford to maintain his buildings.  All NYC rental properties would meet the fate of those ithat many in Harlem, the Bronx did about 1970’s: abandonment and arson.  In the 1980’s NYC had thousands of properties owned by the city because the landlords didn’t think it was worth paying the property taxes on them: the rents they could charge just didn’t support the costs.  As for your friend in Greenwich Village, his housing is being subsidized by his fellow, newer,  tenants and landlord, for the sole reason that he has stayed there a long time.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on August 14, 2017  7:23pm

posted by: 1644 on August 14, 2017 9:21am

Regarding rent control, would you be happy to receive the same pay as you did in 1970?  To have the selling price of your real estate limited to what it was in 1970?  If no, why should your friend’s landlord be limited to charging a 1970’s price.

When an owner renovates, he can charge rent control tenants a 15% increase which is permanent.Also Owners of buildings that have expenses exceeding their rents may apply for an additional rent increase by demonstrating the facts to the State.When apartments are vacated there are a series of additional rent increases that an owner can legally add.Also The NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development has a series of programs through their Neighborhood Preservation offices one in each borough have programs to provide assistance to owners experiencing a wide number of problems.Rent stabilization and Rent control law was never meant to be an act of charity. It was meant to stop price gouging. And sucession rights are not based on need for the same reason. Nor is Rent stabilization, the same as subsidized housing. Subsidized housing is based on need. Last No one No one held a gun to an owner’s head and said buy this building. If an owner bought a building without understanding that this system has been in place for 60 years. why should he be rewarded at the expense of the tenants?

My bad I forgot

How come this state also does not have The Mitchell-Lama program that provides affordable rental and cooperative housing to moderate- and middle-income families.

posted by: DrFeelgood on August 15, 2017  9:47am

This is a wonderful project idea…the developer had originally floated the idea of building a large garage there.  Glad they are filling the empty parking lots with more tax generating apartments which will in turn make New Haven even more desirable.  Now if we could just move the bus stops away from the green, downtown will benefit immensely.

posted by: RobotShlomo on August 15, 2017  11:14am


Maybe if I didn’t see all the same “buzzwords”, then I wouldn’t sound like Dr. Evil using the finger quotes all the time.

posted by: 1644 on August 16, 2017  1:48pm

3/5’s Why no Mitchell-Lama?  (a) The is a NY State program, and we are not NY.  (2) We are Connecticut, which means a very much smaller portion of our population actually wants very long-term rental housing, and most of those who do are poor and lack political influence.  Most CT residents expect to rent for a year or two until they can afford something better, until they move, or until they can buy.  Renting is not considered a permanent status.  Those who want to stay in one place for a long time buy.  Buying on merging requires a small amount of capital, but risking more as many are immediately “underwater” as soon as they buy, given transaction costs.  On the other hand, if you want to take out a wall, build an addition, etc., the benefits will be yours for as long as you stay. Plus, even if you mortgage your place, it is harder for a mortgagor to have his rights foreclosed than it is for a tenant to be evicted.  In general, renting is for the young and footloose, and buying is for the homebodies.

posted by: 1644 on August 17, 2017  1:46pm

HewHaven: No, your landlord is not going to volunteer to lower your rent, just as you would not volunteer to pay more if market prices increased.  The addition of more supply, however, will at least moderate any increases.  Moreover, at the end of your lease, you can check the market to negotiate a better price for yourself, or at least resist an increase.  Many have spoken of the high vacancy rates in East Rock, and lower property values in Westville.  Why?  Because new downtown housing is drawing people who formerly looked only in those neighborhoods. So, as the end of your lease approaches, research your area’s market (i.e., look at Craigslist, etc.). You may find a comparable apartment for less.  If so, you may be able to get a lower rent from your landlord.  Just say,  “I like it here, but the rent is too much.  Craigslist is showing lots of vacancies in this neighborhood renting for $200 less.”  Knowing that if you move, he may be out a month’s rent or more while the place is vacant, he may lower the rent. If he refuses, you can move to a cheaper place.