NEW YORK - Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, US Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan, President and Chief Operating Officer of the Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. Gary Cohn, and New York City Housing Authority Chairman (NYCHA)
“The most effective way to create jobs and win the future is to make investments in areas that promote growth, and there is no greater economic policy than one that invests in our children’s future and helps
“We are thrilled to be able to provide a state-of-the-art school for the kids in
“For nearly 140 years, Goldman Sachs has been a part of
“The building of the Harlem Children’s
The partnership with Harlem Children’s Zone is part of NYCHA’s overall investment in collaboration to revitalize and expand its communities, as well as to participate in the Federal Government’s Choice Neighborhoods and Promise Neighborhoods initiatives encouraging housing authorities to integrate their residential neighborhoods with the larger community and with outside educational resources.
“This new and exciting project is part of NYCHA’s effort to meet the Choice Neighborhoods and Promise Neighborhoods challenge to housing authorities to integrate public housing neighborhoods with the surrounding community and reinvesting critical economic and educational resources in these communities,” said NYCHA Chairman John B. Rhea. “Opening the new Harlem Children’s Zone school at the St. Nicholas Houses is about preserving public housing for the future, and working with our partners to create more education and employment opportunities for our residents. This effort is also part of NYCHA’s comprehensive five year vision – a strategic plan to Preserve Public Housing that is an unprecedented collaboration with public and private partners that will serve as a vital roadmap for addressing our residents’ needs and quality-of-life concerns, as well as other challenges in the future.”
The $100-million, five-story, 135,000-square-foot school building will house a new community center and the Harlem Children’s Zone Promise Academy I, which is currently located at the Harlem Children’s Zone’s 125th Street headquarters and at PS 175 on West 134th Street. The building will have more than 50 classrooms with state-of-the-art technology, a two-floor library, gymnasium/auditorium, large cafeteria/meeting room, fitness room, dance studio, music room, computer lab and three science labs. The students will continue to benefit from the school’s free “wrap-around services”, which include access to medical, dental, and mental health care, a social-work team and a full complement of after-school programs. The building will house a community center offering a variety of free programs to the residents of the neighborhood, such as exercise, nutrition and continuing education classes. The building’s facilities and meeting rooms will also be available to St. Nicholas Houses residents and community groups.
“This project is emblematic of the public-private partnerships that are essential to transforming education and communities,” said Cathie Black, Chancellor of New York City’s Department of Education. “I’m gratified that we have been able to work together to bring the children and parents of the Harlem community a beautiful new school that will serve its students and residents of St. Nicholas Houses for generations to come.”
Preference in the school’s admission lottery has been given to children who reside in the St. Nicholas Houses. A lottery was held last August for three-year-olds and about one-third of the inaugural kindergarten class will be from St. Nicholas. Construction of the building will also create 100 new jobs, and preference for employment will be given to St. Nicholas residents. NYCHA and the Harlem Children’s Zone have held two job fairs and several resume-writing workshops for residents, and will continue to provide job search support in collaboration with NYCHA’s Resident Employment Services.
The light-filled building designed by John Ciardullo Associates will be LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) for Schools certified. As part of the project, Harlem Children’s Zone will also upgrade the existing playgrounds in the housing development and plant new trees along
“Civic Builders is proud to partner with Harlem Children’s Zone on this innovative public- private partnership.