Aug. 2, 2022 By Czarinna Andres
Gov. Kathy Hochul and Mayor Eric Adams were at the Woodside Houses NYCHA complex this morning to announce plans to improve the heating and cooling systems for residents in NYCHA housing developments across the city.
The plan calls for the installation of what’s called an “electric heat pump” in 30,000 units, which would provide tenants in each apartment with the ability to control the heat—or keep their units cool— throughout the year.
The pumps would help decarbonize NYCHA buildings, which currently rely on boiler systems in winter that require fossil fuels. The new devices, powered by electricity, will also reduce the need for pipes that are susceptible to freeze in winter.
The state is spending $70 million on the program but plans to expand the initiative in the future. There are approximately 162,000 NYCHA units in 277 developments across the city.
“We are creating a healthy environment for NYCHA residents…and are transitioning to fossil-free sources of heating while addressing heating and cooling initiatives in our buildings,” Hochul said.
Hochul said that the technology will help combat climate change, something that residents of Woodside and neighboring communities saw first-hand with Hurricane Ida last year.
“We have seen the ravages of climate change right here in Woodside, East Elmhurst and neighborhood communities,” Hochul said. “I saw communities battered and houses flooded.”
The technology behind the electric heat pump stemmed from a competition—called The Clean Heat for All Challenge—that was launched in December. The competition called on industry to come up with an environmentally friendly, low-cost heating/cooling system.
Mayor Eric Adams assured NYCHA residents in Woodside this morning that their quality-of-life matters and noted that NYCHA residents would be the first to receive this technology.
“We promised that NYCHA would not be left behind,” Adams said.
Councilmember Julie Won who represents the district was also in attendance, and tweeted “Since August 2021, our neighbors in NYCHA Woodside Houses have been living without heat and hot water. Access to sustainable, environmentally friendly heat sources are a necessity.”
“Installing 150,000 electric heat pumps in NYCHA complexes across our city is an important step towards a greener New York.” Won said.
Since August 2021, our neighbors in NYCHA Woodside Houses have been living without heat and hot water. Hurricane Ida flooded the outdated heating plants, and they were never fixed. Access to sustainable, environmentally friendly heat sources are a necessity. (1/3) pic.twitter.com/M21tzTufZA
— Council Member Julie Won (@CMJulieWon) August 2, 2022