LIIF-Financed Hyde Leadership Charter School Breaks Ground on New High School in Bronx

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The Hyde Leadership Charter School (also known as Hyde-Bronx), a college preparatory charter school located in the Hunts Point section of the South Bronx, will open its new high school as early as summer 2011. It is the first new school to be built in Hunts Point in more than three decades, and the only college preparatory high school in Hunts Point.

The school broke ground on its new 31,500-square foot building on June 1 and will be located at 830 Hunts Point Avenue, near the school’s current Bryant Avenue location. Hyde-Bronx elementary and middle schools will remain at Bryant Avenue and the high school will be the sole occupant in the new building. The building features two science labs, a roof-top recreation area and an oversized multi-purpose room that will serve as a cafeteria, gym and lecture hall.

Civic Builders, a nonprofit facilities developer, is owner and developer of the custom-designed Hyde-Bronx building. Goldman Sachs’ Urban Investment Group (UIG) and the Low Income Investment Fund (LIIF) worked with Civic Builders to finance the school facility through an innovative New Markets Tax Credit structure.

Hyde-Bronx opened in 2006 with 193 kindergarten and sixth grade students. It will serve nearly 1,000 students from grades K-12 when the new high school building opens in 2011. Hyde-Bronx primarily serves families of the Hunts Point section of the South Bronx – the poorest Congressional district in the U.S. Unlike most other school programs, the school’s process is based on the premise that character development and family involvement are critical components of a student’s education.

“The new school building will inspire continued excellence among our amazing students and allow them to learn in a building designed to serve their needs, help them meet their challenges and attain their academic goals,” said Herbert B. Fixler, Chairman of Hyde-Bronx’s Board of Trustees. “The new high school has been a major goal of ours since we opened our doors four years ago. It will also bring a new vitality to the significantly disadvantaged and underserved Hunts Point community.”

David Umansky, CEO of Civic Builders said, “Hyde Leadership Charter School is providing an exceptional educational opportunity to families in the South Bronx. Civic Builders is excited to further enable Hyde’s important work through our partnership with the school. Together, we are making a difference for children in the South Bronx. We look forward to our continued work.”

UIG and LIIF collaborated with Civic Builders on the project’s financing. UIG made a New Markets Tax Credit equity investment and extended a senior loan; LIIF provided a New Markets Tax credit allocation and extended a subordinate loan to the project; and Civic Builders provided a subordinate loan. In addition, the project benefits from a grant provided to Civic by the U.S. Department of Education through its Credit Enhancement for Charter School Facilities Program and additional credit enhancement from the William E. Simon Foundation.

“The development of the new Hyde-Bronx school is a key component to revitalizing this underserved community, and we are proud to have worked with our partners, LIIF and Civic Builders, to provide the financing to bring this important project to fruition,” said Alicia Glen, managing director and head of the Urban Investment Group at Goldman Sachs.

“The Low Income Investment Fund is proud to support the expansion of Hyde-Bronx and help the school bring exceptional educational opportunities to families in this neighborhood,” said Nancy O. Andrews, LIIF’s President and CEO. “This project is also a unique opportunity to build a dedicated charter school facility from the ground up in New York City.”

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Media Contacts:

Enid Lewin, Hyde-Bronx 646.339.2329/EnidLewinEnid@aol.com

Gwen Shufro, Civic Builders 212.571.7260 x318/Shufro@CivicBuilders.org

Samantha Hojo, LIIF 415.489.6113/shojo@liifund.org

Gia Morón, Goldman Sachs 212.902.4307/gia.moron@gs.com