Next Generation - New York City Housing Authority Sustainability Agenda

This report outlines New York City’s Housing Authority (NYCHA) plan to support safe, clean, and connected communities that reverse the downward spiral of disinvestment. The plan specifically includes climate change as a risk to the community, public health, and public housing - noting that if Hurricane Sandy is predictive, climate will disproportionately impact low-income people and public housing residents.

NYCHA sets the goal of incorporating climate change resiliency into its capital planning. To do so, NYCHA will assess the risks presented by a Sandy-like storm and develop retrofit plans for any developments in the 100-year floodplain. Additionally, NYCHA will assess hazards associated with excessive heat and other expected climate risks. While not directly related to their adaptation strategy, NYCHA outlines their goal to build more green infrastructure in developments that are within Combined Sewer Overflow priority areas. This will help the city better manage stormwater and protect water quality.


NYCHA’s properties are disproportionately located near polluting industries and are often home to residents with high rates of asthma. Climate change is expected to exacerbate these health risks.  As New York’s largest low-income housing provider, NYCHA recognizes that it has an important role to play in helping to achieve climate justice.

In addition to their resilience goals, NYCHA outlines several broader sustainability strategies. These include connecting residents to green jobs, reducing utility costs and emissions, eliminating root causes of mold by fixing leaks and modernizing ventilation, and incorporating sustainability into the day-to-day management of properties. These strategies are aimed at improving NYCHA’s financial stability for the long-term, improving their efficiency and effectiveness as landlords, expanding and preserving affordable housing in the city, and engaging residents.  


Publication Date: April 22, 2016

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