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City Council Committee Approves Massive Mixed-Income Housing Project In East Harlem

A park on East 96th Street in East Harlem, which would be replaced by a planned mixed-income housing development

Mayor Bill de Blasio's Mandatory Inclusionary Housing policy scored a major victory in a city council committee Wednesday.

The committee voted to approve a proposal to build a 60-story tower with 1,000 apartments, a third of them to be designated as affordable housing, on a full block between First and Second avenues and East 96th and East 97th streets. The 673-foot-tall building is required to include 30% affordable housing in order to qualify for a zoning bonus under the Mandatory Inclusionary Housing program, Crain's New York reports.

While Affordable New York, the revamped version of the popular 421-a tax abatement that subsidizes affordable portions of multifamily developments, has been utilized several times since it was passed, the Mandatory Inclusionary Housing program has been turned down several times over neighborhood concerns regarding height and usage.

With the committee's approval, the city council is expected to give the final go-ahead to the East Harlem proposal, to be built and financed by AvalonBay Communities. The sizable building plan is also set to create space for three high schools and a replacement for the park that sits on the block.