Kingsbridge Armory Community Benefits Agreement

The Kingsbridge Armory Community Benefits Agreement: An Overview

The Kingsbridge Armory, located in the Bronx, New York, is a massive building that was once used as a military site. Today, the armory has become a site of controversy, as it sits vacant and unused. Recently, a group of community advocates, labor unions, and elected officials have come together to negotiate the Kingsbridge Armory Community Benefits Agreement.

But what exactly is this agreement, and why is it so important?

The Kingsbridge Armory Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) is a legally binding contract that aims to ensure that the redevelopment of the armory provides tangible benefits to the surrounding community. The agreement outlines the responsibilities of the developer, Related Companies, and the benefits that the community can expect to receive.

Some of the key provisions of the CBA include:

1. Living wage jobs: The developer has committed to creating a minimum of 1,200 living wage jobs, defined as jobs that pay at least $15 per hour plus benefits. These jobs must be offered to local residents first.

2. Community space: The armory will include a 50,000 square foot community space, which will be available for use by local organizations and community groups.

3. Affordable housing: A minimum of 30% of the residential units in the armory will be designated as affordable housing, and will be made available to low-income residents.

4. Environmental sustainability: The developer must adhere to strict environmental standards, including using green building materials and implementing energy-efficient technology.

The Kingsbridge Armory CBA is significant for a number of reasons. Firstly, it sets a precedent for future development projects in New York City. The CBA model has been used successfully in other cities such as Los Angeles and San Francisco, but this is the first time it has been implemented in New York on such a large scale.

Secondly, the CBA is an important victory for the community. The Kingsbridge Armory is located in a predominantly low-income, minority neighborhood, and many residents were concerned that the redevelopment would only benefit wealthy developers and not the local community. The CBA ensures that the benefits of the development will be shared by everyone, not just the wealthy few.

Finally, the Kingsbridge Armory CBA is an example of the power of community organizing. The negotiations for the agreement were led by a coalition of community groups, labor unions, and elected officials, who worked tirelessly to ensure that the redevelopment of the armory would benefit the community. This type of grassroots organizing is crucial in holding developers accountable and ensuring that they prioritize the needs of the local community.

In conclusion, the Kingsbridge Armory Community Benefits Agreement is an important step forward for New York City. It ensures that the redevelopment of the armory will provide tangible benefits to the surrounding community, and serves as a model for future development projects. The CBA is a testament to the power of community organizing and shows that when communities come together, they have the ability to shape the future of their neighborhoods.

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