NEW YORK CITY—As the industry eagerly awaits word on changes to affordable housing rules and ratios under Mayor Bill de Blasio, the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development has created a new division that will focus on planning and running the forthcoming mandatory inclusionary zoning program, according to Crain’s New York Business. HPD commissioner Vicki Been also pledges to cut red tape that could shave months off the time it takes to complete affordable projects.

The new unit, called Neighborhood Strategies, will be led by Daniel Hernandez, a onetime executive at affordable-housing developer Jonathan Rose Cos. Hernandez’ division will take over planning duties, which include preparations for large-scale projects and working on land-use review applications. The new unit also will run the city’s forthcoming mandatory inclusionary housing program, which will require developers who gain the right to construct a larger building through either a neighborhoodwide or spot rezoning to include a stated percentage of affordable housing without subsidies.

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