Leveraging NYCHA?s Purchasing Power: A Feasibility Study of a Purchasing Collaboration Among Public Housing Authorities

Client: New York City Housing Authority
Faculty: S.J Avery and Ana Oliveira
Team: John Christopher Collins, Robert del Prado, Rebecca Kagan, Melinda Newe
Year: 2009
The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), along with other public housing authorities throughout the country, has seen a major decrease in subsidies from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development since 2001. Now, with a deficit of $198 million, NYCHA has requested a Capstone team to investigate the feasibility of a purchasing cooperative with the goal of creating a new revenue stream. An in-depth literature review and extensive research was conducted on the various models of purchasing partnerships, both in theory and practice, to see what best suits NYCHA's needs, size, and what can best leverage its sophisticated supply chain operations. The team designed and administered an online survey to 200 regional housing authorities to gauge interest and financial feasibility. Complementing the survey, the team conducted phone interviews with potential vendors and self-selected public housing authorities. Additionally, an evaluation of potential issues and barriers to implementation was also conducted with the team and NYCHA's legal department. The report synthesizes survey data and qualitative research yielding a detailed cost-benefit analysis and recommended next steps for NYCHA.