Better Neighborhoods, Inc. and Land Bank Set for New Construction on Prospect Street in Schenectady

Better Neighborhoods, Inc. and Land Bank Set for New Construction on Prospect Street in Schenectady

State Grant Continues Progress on Eastern Avenue Corridor

June 22, 2018

Schenectady, N.Y. – Better Neighborhoods, Inc. (BNI) and the Capital Region Land Bank today announced plans to construct two new homes containing three apartments on a vacant lot at 110 and 112 Prospect Street in Schenectady.  Prospect Street is located just off Eastern Avenue in Schenectady.

James Flacke, Executive Director of BNI said, “New York State has awarded BNI $576,000 to construct new homes on Prospect Street as part of the Small Rental Development Initiative Program. This new program operated by NYS Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) helps to build high quality rental units in residential areas using local non-profit ownership.  We thank Governor Cuomo and HCR for this grant that will allow us to turn a vacant lot into new quality housing.”

Richard Ruzzo, Chairman of the Capital Region Land Bank and a member of the Schenectady County Legislature said, “We want to congratulate the BNI team for partnering with the Land Bank to secure this important HCR grant that will leverage two Prospect Street structures that were uninhabitable and were demolished by the Land Bank so that new housing could be built. This new project is another prime example of the Land Bank executing its core mission by partnering with key agencies in the community, removing blight and revitalizing our neighborhoods with safe, quality family housing.”

The project is being designed by Schenectady-based architect Stracher Roth Gilmore and will feature a new home with two apartments at 110 Prospect Street and a second one-unit carriage home at 112 Prospect Street.

This new housing construction project is just one of many efforts to revitalize the Eastern Avenue neighborhood.  The Land Bank, Metroplex and the City of Schenectady have worked together to demolish more than twenty-five blighted buildings, renovate eight long-vacant buildings and build a new park.

BNI is also administering a $700,000 program that assists qualified homeowners bring their homes up to code.  At 99 Prospect Street, the SEAT Center is working with the Land Bank and BNI to construct a new LEED certified energy efficient home.

Better Neighborhoods, Inc.  (BNI) was founded in 1966 as a non-profit focused on housing development and community renewal. The agency has built or repaired hundreds of homes in Schenectady and has also fostered the birth of other non-profits, such as YouthBuild. BNI has been managed by James Flacke, its Executive Director, since 2015.

The Capital Region Land Bank was established in 2012 as one of the first land banks formed in New York State.  The Land Bank’s mission is to strengthen neighborhoods within Schenectady and Amsterdam by mitigating blight.  More information and a list of Land Bank and City of Schenectady owned properties for sale can be found at