… De Blasio benefited from deep experience within HPD, which had dealt with Bloomberg’s plan and, before it, Mayor Koch’s 1986 “Ten-Year Plan” for 250,000 units of affordable housing. While Koch’s plan might not have actually created a quarter of a million units, it did set in motion construction and preservation efforts that continued into the Dinkins and Giuliani administrations.
“I think what the last several administrations has done is to create an engine that develops affordable housing at the municipal government level that doesn’t exist anywhere else. It’s a remarkable government structure that creates more affordable housing units than anywhere,” says Jessica Katz, executive director at Citizens Housing & Planning Council.
… Two other flaws of the de Blasio housing plan were leaving out NYCHA and its treatment of homelessness.
Katz said the housing plan did not include NYCHA because it was already considered affordable housing and it was decided early on that it could not count, which left NYCHA residents with no help and in disrepair. While de Blasio did issue a series of strategies to save NYCHA, and inject huge amounts of money, some thought it odd that the city was spending billions to build new affordable housing while, on NYCHA campuses, its existing supply was crumbling.
On homelessness, City Hall’s power structure made it difficult to harness the housing plan to the best of its ability to help more homeless families in New York City, “The HPD commissioner and the DHS commissioner report to different deputy mayors. The two are just running on parallel track,” Katz says. “So I think the chain of command in City Hall made it harder for those goals to work towards each other.”