The Golden Gays: How New York Is Building A Home For LGBT Elders

LGBT seniors routinely face discrimination and fear of applying for services.

By Annette Barlow August 8, 2016
Photo courtesy of Marvel Architects

“LGBT seniors are facing a housing crisis,” says Michael Adams, CEO of Services and Advocacy for LGBT Elders (SAGE). Access to low-income, affordable housing is limited in cities across the US, and LGBT seniors routinely face discrimination and fear of applying for services, should they experience said discrimination.

But two new developments, planned for Brooklyn and the Bronx, aim to address this issue. The 82-unit Crotona Seniors Residences in the Bronx, and the 145-apartment, 16-story wing of the Ingersoll Building in Fort Greene will break new ground in providing affordable housing access to LGBT seniors, aged 62 and up. A lottery will be held to assign places, as demand is expected to be high.

Related: New York’s Next Best Neighborhood For Millennials Is…Philly?

By partnering with SAGE, both projects aim to make themselves LGBT-friendly, with planned Pride celebrations, and live events with notable gay, lesbian and transgender artists and writers available to tenants and local residents alike. SAGE will help to run senior centers in both locations, with health and cultural services topping the list of available amenities.

The developments—both of which are due to open by 2019—are part of Mayor de Blasio‘s plan to build 80,000 affordable housing units for low-income residents across the city within the next decade. The Crotona residence is being developed by Help USA and is expected to cost $38.4 million, while the Ingersoll residence, developed by BFC Partners, will be renovated at a cost of around $47 million. Funding comes from a variety of sources, including the New York City Housing Authority and New York State Homes and Community Renewal.

Annette Barlow



Annette is freelance editor, sub-editor, journalist and proofreader with a fierce love of all things feminist, food and music. She is a regular fixture on the arts, culture and feature desks at The Guardian, and her words have appeared on NME, Great British Chefs, The Fly, The Line of Best Fit and Australian Times.

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