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Port Chester, NY, United States, 2006/08/16 - Real estate development and management company, POKO Partners, will be the first company to build an affordable housing project in both New York City and Connecticut.
Real estate development and management company, POKO Partners, is the first company to build an affordable housing project in both New York City and Connecticut with DensArmor Plus™ by Georgia-Pacific. POKO Partners selected this paperless drywall based on its resistance to moisture and mold growth behind walls and ceilings.
“POKO chose Georgia-Pacific’s DensArmor Plus to help prevent mold and moisture related problems. While it’s an additional investment, the product is good for our tenants because it’s smart business,” stated Kenneth Olson, President of POKO Partners. “No one wants mold in a building. There is also a potential health and operating savings related to the use of a product that manages moisture so well.”
DensArmor Plus offers significant advantages compared to traditional drywall. The paperless drywall incorporates glass mats on the surfaces of the board instead of the paper found on traditional drywall. Substitution of glass-mat facings for paper facings removes a potential food source for mold. Since approximately 70% of the interior surfaces of an average home are comprised of drywall, building with DensArmor Plus is a sound decision that can help protect a home’s interior wall surfaces from the negative effects of incidental moisture and the potential for mold development.
Cassiopeia Apartments – New York, NY
POKO’s Cassiopeia Apartments on 250 West 116th Street in Harlem are currently under construction, using DensArmor Plus drywall by Georgia-Pacific. POKO Partners assembled the vacant properties at 246-250 West 116th Street in partnership with NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development to build the affordable housing project. POKO worked with the community and the City to develop a plan that was endorsed by the community board, the Borough President, the Department of City Planning and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development. The project will include 32 units of affordable, mixed-income housing and 2,000 square feet of ground floor retail. Project financing is being provided by the NYC Housing Development Corporation, Bank of America, and First Sterling Financial Corporation with the support of NYS Division of Housing and Community Renewal and NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development.
“As a leader in community development, Bank of America is committed to neighborhood development in Harlem,” said Brian Tracey, Bank of America Community Development market executive, Atlantic region. “POKO's project will help to revitalize the area and encourage economic development and growth.”
Thread Mill - Stonington, CT
The much anticipated $15-million revitalization of the former William Clarke Thread Mill in the Pawcatuck section of Stonington, CT, is currently in the closing process. Once construction begins, the process is expected to take 15 to 18 months. POKO Partners will use the mold-resistant Georgia-Pacific product, DensArmor Plus drywall. POKO will turn the old mill into 57 condominium units and 8,200 square feet of retail space. The Thread Mill project is considered an integral part in the rejuvenation of the Pawcatuck section of Stonington. POKO Partners pioneered the adoption of the town’s Industrial Heritage Re-use District in August 2004. The concept is to open up redevelopment options town-wide, while respecting and preserving the historic fabric of the community’s industrial past. This adaptive re-use of old manufacturing complexes has been a growing trend in New England, and revitalizing these old buildings preserves the history while also preventing the vacant structures from becoming fire hazards. Tax revenue is estimated to increase by at least 500% from what is currently generated by the mill.
“The potential revitalization that POKO Partners has planned for this neighborhood with the redevelopment of the Thread Mill is very exciting,” Tracey said.
POKO Partners LLC (pokopartners.com) has over 15 years of experience in rehabilitating residential complexes and new construction. Since its inception, POKO has become actively engaged in the management and development of real estate in the tri-state area and beyond. A very hands-on developer, POKO gets involved in everything from the project conceptualization to its construction. Revitalizing underutilized and outdated buildings requires the utmost care. POKO is dedicated to preserving the historical aspects of structures, and restoring buildings to their original vitality and grandeur. Adaptive re-use projects are an integral part of growing communities, as they can increase property values of surrounding neighborhoods, provide additional retail and residential space, and rejuvenate the community spirit by improving the general appearance of a neighborhood’s buildings and landscape.