Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

Vicki Been

Vicki Been

  • How to Break Barriers to Build More Housing in New York? Experts Point to Changes

    A ground-breaking (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)


    New York City has an acute housing shortage, with emergency-level lows in apartment vacancies, especially for units affordable to most New Yorkers, and astronomical rents, a homelessness crisis, and halting recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

    At the core of the city’s housing supply deficit is a lengthy and cumbersome land use decision-making process, a bureaucratic maze of local and state regulations combined with political dynamics that have often

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  • What Happened to the Sunnyside Yard Master Plan?

    Rendering of the Sunnyside Yard Master Plan


    In March 2020, then-Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration and Amtrak released the Sunnyside Yard Master Plan, an ambitious $14 billion infrastructure project that would deck the 180-acre rail yard in Queens and effectively create a new community with thousands of affordable homes and dozens of acres of green and public space situated atop a new regional rail hub.

    But the plan was released at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, just before the city and state went into lockdown, economic activity slowed to a crawl, and every city infrastructure project was put on

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  • How Mayor Adams is Reorganizing City Government

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

    Mayor Adams at City Hall (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Mayor Eric Adams came into office promising a more efficient and effective city government that doesn’t operate in silos and he’s taken steps in his first weeks on the job that he says will achieve that goal. Adams has reorganized the structure of city government, merged and consolidated several offices, created new roles while separating previously existing ones at the top of City Hall and established his top

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  • ‘We Really Changed the Structure of Housing Production’: Vicki Been on the De Blasio Administration's Affordable Housing Record & What Comes Next

    (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayoral Photography Office)

    Vicki Been with Mayor de Blasio (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Mayor Adams must set the tone that housing is a priority in his administration and pursue holistic, aggressive approaches to address the housing crisis in New York City, according to ​​former Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Vicki Been.

    Appearing on a recent episode of the Max Politics podcast from Gotham

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  • Max Politics Podcast: Vicki Been on De Blasio Era Housing Policy, Neighborhood Rezonings, & More

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    Then-Deputy Mayor Vicki Been (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    January 12, 2022 - Max Politics Podcast: Vicki Been on De Blasio Era Housing Policy, Neighborhood Rezonings, & More

    Former Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Vicki Been joined the show to reflect on housing policy and outcomes during the de Blasio years, when she was first housing commissioner before returning to NYU then re-joining the administration as deputy mayor. Been discussed affordable housing planning, the implementation of Mandatory

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  • Experts Examine Challenges and Solutions to Building Affordable Housing in New York

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    Mayor de Blasio breaks ground on an affordable housing project in Brooklyn (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's office)


    New York City’s housing stock has failed to keep pace with job growth over the last decade and most newly created housing continues to be attainable only for higher-income residents. A panel of experts examined those trends, presented in a new report released Wednesday, and the policy choices that led to them, and recommended solutions that the city and state should adopt if they hope to mitigate a housing crisis that has been further

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  • City Housing Commissioner to Return to Teaching, Remain in Government Role

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    HPD Commissioner Been & Mayor de Blasio (photo: Demetrius Freeman, Mayor's Office)


    Commissioner Vicki Been, head of the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), is planning to return to teaching at NYU Law School, Gotham Gazette has learned.

    According to the school’s course offerings, Been will be teaching a Spring semester property law course on Monday and Wednesday mornings, 8:50-10:40 a.m., beginning in January. According to an HPD spokesperson, Been is not leaving the administration.

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  • Debate Over Best Path to Affordable Housing Development Continues

    been de blasio housing

    Vicki Been (photo: Demetrius Freeman/Mayor's Office)


    While sweeping new norms for city land use and housing development were passed into law last month, the debate over how to best achieve affordable housing continues. The larger affordable housing picture was the subject of a Wednesday event hosted by Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, where Vicki Been, commissioner of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), and Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. were among the guest speakers who presented their views on city

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