Red Oak Apartments

Red Oak Apartments

Red Oak Apartments


Red Oak Apartments

Date Opened

March 3, 1982

Residential Units

230 independent apartments for elderly and/or physically handicapped person with very low incomes

Development Partners

Architect: Schuman, Lichtenstein, Claman GC: DIC-Underhill Contractors
Major Funders: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and individual limited partners

Rental Subsidy

Project-Based Section 8 Contract

More Info

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Building History

When WSFSSH was developing its first building, the Marseilles, it quickly became apparent that one building was only a start to meeting the need for safe senior housing on the Upper West Side. In early 1978, founding board member Leah Schneider identified a vacant lot on 106th Street between Amsterdam and Columbus as a possible site for a second WSFSSH building. She knew that it was the site of a former nursing home and that it continued to be owned by the Little Sisters of the Poor. WSFSSH located the Little Sisters’ attorneys and entered into discussion with them. While no one from WSFSSH ever met any of the Sisters, they learned that the Sisters believed that senior housing on the site would be a wonderful use of their property and an extension of their mission. On October 28, 1980, the order sold the extensive property to WSFSSH for $350,000. WSFSSH has continued to try to be faithful to that mission of serving low income elderly persons ever since.

The site became home to a newly constructed building, named the Red Oak because of a stately red oak tree on the property. The building opened March 3, 1982, and provides 230 apartments for elderly and/or physically handicapped persons with low incomes, as well as a senior center within the building. (For more information, see The Center at the Red Oak.) From the start, Red Oak provided on-site social services. Although supportive social services are now required for this kind of federally funded housing, when the Red Oak opened, such services were neither required nor funded. WSFSSH had to fight to fund these on-site social services.