CPC was formed in 1974 as a direct response to the issues of property abandonment and blight that New York City was facing at the time. Each year, between 20,000 and 30,000 rental units were being lost in to abandonment, fire, or demolition, and the City was taking ownership of hundreds of buildings through foreclosure and forfeiture.
In response to a 1972-73 study conducted by the New York City Clearing House, an association of commercial banks, and the banking community, led by David Rockefeller, stepped up with a proposal to address the problem. Perhaps, focusing a small amount of pooled capital on a few neighborhoods-namely Crown Heights in Brooklyn and Washington Heights in Manhattan—would improve building quality and people’s living conditions, and help prevent the blight in surrounding neighborhoods from destabilizing them. CPC was founded in 1974 to be a self-sustaining vehicle, a departure from many nonprofits, which rely on regular injections of charitable support.
Today, CPC stands as the largest CDFI solely committed to investing in multifamily housing, having invested more than $11 billion to finance the creation and preservation of 196,000 units of quality housing in neighborhoods across New York State and beyond.