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Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that construction has begun on a mixed-use development with 40 affordable apartments and five commercial spaces in the Franklin County Village of Malone. The $22 million Harison Place will have on-site support services for 20 households experiencing homelessness. The complex replaces a row of blighted buildings on Main Street in the core of the village’s downtown.

“All New Yorkers deserve the opportunity to live in homes that fit their needs and provide them with a chance to thrive,” Governor Hochul said. “Harison Place is a crucial investment in the wellbeing and health of the community and an important step forward for the Village of Malone and its future growth.”

“Converting the underutilized buildings on Main Street in Malone will provide 40 new apartments for struggling New Yorkers in a location that otherwise may have been inaccessible to them,” said Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado. “The Harison Place project will not only provide housing and new commercial spaces in the village’s downtown but also provide supportive services that will help homeless New Yorkers get back on their feet.”

James Button, President & CEO of Citizen Advocates, offers opening remarks to the audience attending the groundbreaking for the Harison Place Project.

As part of the project, seven buildings damaged from a 2017 fire were demolished to make room for the new four-story apartment building. The street-level commercial space will be split into five rentable units intended for community service organizations and other enterprises that complement existing businesses and community needs.

The apartments at Harison Place will be affordable to households earning 60 percent or less of the Area Median Income. Twenty of the apartments will include individualized services funded through the Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative and administered by the New York State Office of Mental Health. Services will include mental health services, career and training support, tenant education, financial planning and literacy, life skills, healthcare coordination, addiction prevention, treatment, and recovery services, and more. The services and support provider for these units is Citizen Advocates, Inc.

The building is designed to comply with New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s New Construction Housing Program, as well as nationally recognized industry standards for energy efficiency and green building practices, including all-electric Energy Star appliances.

Darren Scott, Upstate East Director of Development, Homes and Community Renewal, speaks to the audience prior to the groundbreaking for the Harison Place Project.

Residents will have access to free enhanced broadband internet connection, green space, a playground, laundry facilities, and a community room.

Harison Place is designed to complement the surrounding historic architecture. Its 19th century-style façade includes a flatiron shape made of engineered stone and brick with embellishments. The building will include sandstone blocks salvaged during demolition of Malone’s historic Paddock Building – also known as the Gorman Building – which was destroyed in the 2017 fire.

The project developer is Citizen Advocates and 3d Development Group, LLC.

New York State Homes and Community Renewal funding for Harison Place includes $7.8 million in Low Income Housing Tax Credit equity, $2.9 million from the Supportive Housing Opportunity Program, and $900,000 from the Rural and Urban Community Investment Fund. Empire State Development awarded $445,000 from the Consolidated Funding Program, and NYSERDA will provide $40,000 in support. The Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance will also provide $4.8 million from the Homeless Housing and Assistance Program. Citizen Advocates provided $4 million to fund the project and the Federal Home Loan Bank provided $600,000.

New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “Harison Place will help breathe new life into Malone’s Main Street by replacing a row of blighted buildings with a beautiful and energy-efficient mixed-use development. The 40 affordable homes offer excellent amenities, including free internet, while simultaneously boosting the local economy with the inclusion of five new businesses. Thank you to Governor Hochul for her commitment to affordable housing, and to our partners for working so hard to bring this development to this stage. We look forward to welcoming the first residents to their new homes.”

New York State Office of Mental Health Commissioner Dr. Ann Sullivan said, “A crucial factor in the process of recovery is having a stable and secure place to call ‘home.’ The 20 supportive housing units that will be included in Harison Place will enable people with mental illness to live and thrive in their own home and their own community. Governor Hochul’s commitment to supportive housing is providing stable housing with services that will yield better health outcomes and allow more vulnerable New Yorkers to become valuable contributors to their communities.”

New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Daniel W. Tietz said, “Permanent supportive housing can play a crucial role in helping vulnerable New Yorkers overcome challenges that contributed to their housing instability. Harison Place will help to fill this critical need in Franklin County, while also redeveloping a block of Malone that has been largely underutilized for many years. Through her continued support for the Homeless Housing and Assistance Program, Governor Hochul demonstrates her steadfast commitment toward ensuring all New Yorkers have access to safe, affordable housing.”

Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Hope Knight, said, “We are proud to join our state agency partners in realizing a vision of economic development that includes reimagining, rather than abandoning, once-blighted buildings as dynamic places to live and work. The Harison Place mixed-use project will preserve local history while creating new spaces that offer residents an affordable vision for the future, and with critical free enhanced broadband access that will increase opportunity for all.”

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority President and CEO Doreen M. Harris said, “NYSERDA is pleased to see construction begin on Harison Place, which will provide supportive affordable housing to Malone’s low-income residents that is clean, resilient and energy efficient, all of which will provide occupants with a significantly improved living environment as well as electric vehicle charging capability. Projects like this support Governor Hochul’s commitment to achieving 2 million climate friendly homes while ensuring all New Yorkers benefit from clean energy investments and have the opportunity to participate in the transition to a clean green future.”

State Senator Dan Stec said, “Harison Place will fill a vital need for affordable housing in Malone. The proposed development will match the unique character of the community and also provide a location for essential local services and organizations. When completed, Harison Place will have a positive impact on our region for years to come.”

Assemblymember Billy Jones said, “Citizen Advocates has put in a lot of hard work and resources into the Harison Place Project over the past several years to get to the point of this groundbreaking. This project provides high-quality affordable housing, including for those in need of supportive services, which is needed in the North Country. This project is a substantial addition to the Malone community and will be a key factor in revitalizing downtown. I’m happy to have been able to assist along the way, and a big thank you goes out to Citizen Advocates and all the community leaders who put in many hours to make this happen.”

Chairman of the Franklin County Board of Legislature Donald Dabiew said, “Vibrant downtowns are essential for economic development. The availability of affordable housing is critical to any community; the beautifully proposed aesthetics of the Harison Place project preserves the rich historic atmosphere of downtown. It will be great to have other businesses and housing located on Main Street that leads to better opportunities for everyone.”

Village of Malone Mayor Andrea Dumas said, “The Village of Malone is looking forward to the new project on Main Street and the new housing our community is of for our residents and the support they will receive. Thank you to Citizen Advocate and the financial partners that are assisting with the project.”

Citizen Advocates President and CEO James Button said, “The placement of safe and stable housing in the heart of downtown Malone was deliberate. Our downtown, like many in the North Country, is at a tipping point, and Harison Place is proof of what we can accomplish when an entire community rallies behind a shared goal. Our vision from the start was to replace blighted property with affordable housing, and the investment in this vision sends a strong signal to individuals and organizations that our downtown communities can once again be thriving economic drivers. In fact, we believe the Harison Place project is a template for all communities. This is about more than housing – it is a pathway to healthier communities and resilient economies that draw new investment. From this, a reinvigorated North Country will emerge.”

President of 3d Development Group LLC Bruce Levine said, “Safe, decent, and affordable housing is the foundation of any community, and Harison Place will accomplish this and more. This multifaceted project will not only provide new quality housing, but also additional commercial space in the core of downtown Malone, reuse of historic artifacts which may have otherwise been lost, permanent supportive housing services, and an opportunity to progress downtown revitalization efforts in the North Country Region.”