TOMPKINS COUNTY,N.Y.(WENY)--On September 20th, Cornell University announced it would be extending support for affordable housing in Tompkins County. The University has been contributing funding to affordable housing since 2009. Staff with the university says this not only helps community members afford living in Tompkins county, but it also helps the sustainability factor and bring business to the county over all. 

People are living closer to where they work, they have to drive less and it's better just to be able to you know have the amenities of the greater Ithaca area and not having to live so far away," says Jeremy Thomas, Senior Director Cornell University Real Estate Department.

Along with announcing that they will be committing more funding towards affordable housing over the next six years, the university made another   announcement impacting the commitment they had already made in 2015. 

"So we recently announced we're going to put an additional 200,000 dollars into the fund and our current commitment and agreement runs through 2021 and we agreed to add an additional 200,00 dollars  per year for another six years beyond that," says Thomas.

Due to their continuous funding, Cornell has helped created over 400 new affordable units and also influence additional investments from other parties.

"The investment that we've leveraged through this program, so we've succeeded in creation of 491 units in this project, we've invested about 4 million dollars in grants, but that's leveraged 114 million dollars in additional investments into affordable housing in the community and that's a great success story," says Thomas.

In 2015, Cornell agreed to contribute $1.2 Million dollars ($200,000 annually) over the six year period where as the county pledged $600,000 ($100,00 annually) and the city added $100,000 for the first year of the extended program. This year the University committed another $1.2 Million over the six year span through 2027. The coming extension will bring Cornell Universities total investment into Community Housing Development Funding to $3.8 Million, from 2009 to 2027.

For more on Cornell's investment and involvement with the Community Housing Development Fund, you can click here.