March 10, 2020

New Online Portal Enables 24/7 Application Access 

 ROCHESTER, N.Y., March 10, 2020 – The Rochester Housing Authority (RHA) announced today that Public Housing waiting list applications will now be accepted online at Public Housing is a program in which qualifying applicants live in a unit owned and operated by the Rochester Housing Authority.


Applications for the Public Housing Waiting List can be submitted at any time, as the Waiting List for this program remains open throughout the year. This is a separate program from the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Waiting List, which is currently closed.


The organization’s goal is to move the Public Housing Waiting List to a completely digital model by 2022, as the Section 8 HCV Program was done in 2016, with great success. While this transition takes place, Public Housing applications will continue to be available by mailing or faxing printed applications, found at, or in-person at RHA’s Applications Processing Center at 270 Lake Avenue, Suite 300.


“At the Rochester Housing Authority, we’re dedicated to continuing to improve our processes and procedures to meet technological advances and the growing need for housing in our community,” said Shawn Burr, Deputy Executive Director at the Rochester Housing Authority. “Digitizing our Waiting Lists means we can move people more efficiently into housing while also providing a more convenient and timely process for customers.” 


RHA has 2,400+ Public Housing units at 20 residential communities and scattered sites, serving more than 4,000 people across the City of Rochester. Communities include: Over 50-years-old/Elderly Disabled (Danforth Tower East/West, Glenwood Gardens, Hudson Ride Tower, Kennedy Tower and Parliament Arm); Under 50-years-old (Lake Tower, Lena Gantt Estates*, Lexington Court* and University Tower); Family Housing (Bay-Zimmer Townhouses, Bronson Court, Federal Street Townhouses, Harriet Tubman Estates, Holland Townhouses, Lena Gantt Estates*, Lexington Court* and Parkside Apartments); and Enriched Housing (Jonathon Child, Danforth Towers, and Hudson Ridge Tower).


What is Public Housing?

Public housing was established to provide decent and safe rental housing for eligible low-income families, the elderly, and persons with disabilities. Public housing comes in all sizes and types, from scattered single-family houses to high-rise apartments for elderly families. There are approximately 1.2 million households living in public housing units, managed by some 3,300 HAs. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) administers Federal aid to local housing agencies (HAs) that manage the housing for low-income residents at rents they can afford.








Public housing is limited to low-income families and individuals. The HA determines eligibility based on: 1) annual gross income; 2) whether you qualify as elderly, a person with a disability, or as a family; and 3) U.S. citizenship or eligible immigration status. If you are eligible, RHA will check your references to make sure you and your family will be good tenants. HAs will deny admission to any applicant whose habits and practices may be expected to have a detrimental effect on other tenants or on the project's environment.


HAs use income limits developed by HUD. HUD sets the lower income limits at 80% and very low-income limits at 50% of the median income for the county or metropolitan area in which you choose to live. Income limits vary from area to area so you may be eligible at one Housing Authority, but not at another.


RHA’s qualification guidelines for Public Housing can be found at


About Rochester Housing Authority

Established in 1955 as an independent public corporation by New York State Public Housing Law, the Rochester Housing Authority (RHA) serves more than 26,000 lower-income families, seniors and disabled residents and program participants in the five-county Greater Rochester area. Approximately 20% of those reside in the 2,400+ RHA public housing units, while others served receive assistance in the form of voucher or certificate programs that help them afford eligible, private housing.


Rochester Housing Authority does not discriminate based on race, color, national origin, sex, religion, family status or disability in leasing, rental, occupancy, use or other disposition of housing or related facilities.


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