Housing + Development

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Anti-Construction Harassment Coalition Rallies at City Hall For Tenant Safety

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

A group by the name of Stand for Tenant Safety, consisting of tenant groups and eleven City Council Members (including Rosie Mendez from the Lower East Side, Stephen Levin from Williamsburg, and Antonio Reynoso of Bushwick) rallied on the steps of City Hall this morning. Never mind the rain. The coalition is named for a new report, released today by the Urban Justice Center, that coincides with the introduction of a legislation package that would protect tenants from landlords and developers who carry out neglectful and malicious construction projects. “My tenants have rain coming down in their apartments, so this is nothing,” said CM Rosie Mendez of the Lower East Side.

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Chinatown and LES Residents Rally Against ‘Building From Hell’

(Photo: Jaime Cone)

(Photo: Jaime Cone)

Around 250 local residents, business owners and members of the Coalition to Protect Chinatown & The Lower East Side met at the future site of a controversial luxury tower and marched to City Hall to protest the construction of Extell’s “Building From Hell.” The rally was a show of support for a rezoning plan being pushed by the Chinatown Working Group as well as a stand against a tax abatement program for developers that opponents say is costing the city millions in revenue.

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Williamsburg’s Sleek New Hotel Gets Glassed Up (Plus: The Rooms!)

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If you were anywhere in the general proximity of the William Vale these last few days you may have noticed the futuristic giant is getting glassed in. The rapidly rising hotel has just one last growth spurt left in it before it reaches max height, according to general manager Sebastien Maingourd. Construction on the building, located on Wythe Avenue between North 12th and 13th Streets, should be complete by the end of the year. They’re currently shooting to open on March 1, 2016, and we’ve obtained some renderings of the rooms and dining space.

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Three Bowery Buildings Vacated After Wall Collapses On Workers

Outside 210 Bowery. (Photo Credit: Daniel Maurer)

Outside 210 Bowery. (Photo Credit: Daniel Maurer)

A brick wall collapsed onto two workers this morning as they renovated a building at Bowery and Rivington.

The workers were digging for concrete placement in an elevator pit at 210 Bowery when the incident occurred. Both men were able to extricate themselves from the debris and sustained minor injuries, according to the Department of Buildings. One worker was transported to Bellevue in stable condition, the fire department said. The four-story structure and the two buildings on either side of it were given vacate orders.

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Extell Mum About Height of LES Towers as Residents Complain About Construction

Anthony Abbruzzese gives a construction update. (Photo Credit: Sam Gillette)

Anthony Abbruzzese gives a construction update. (Photo Credit: Sam Gillette)

Extell Development addressed concerns last night about the massive towers that will rise on the former Pathmark site on Cherry Street, but refused to tell local residents just how tall they will be.

No height information was given about the massive condo tower or its smaller, more “affordable” sister, scheduled for completion in 2019.
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From Squat to Rooftop Squash: A New Garden Blooms at Umbrella House

Residents hang out at Umbrella House's new rooftop garden (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Residents hang out at Umbrella House’s new rooftop garden (Photo: Nicole Disser)

After a visit last year to ABC No Rio, a former squat building turned community space still very much awaiting its day for the ambitious makeover plans to get underway, I didn’t know what to expect from Umbrella House. The latter is a former East Village squat that, after years of push and pull with the city over legalization, became a fully legal, limited-equity affordable housing co-op. But then I caught up with Steven Englander, who now works at his former residence ABC No Rio and has lived at Umbrella House for about 16 years.

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Delicious Development: Farm On Domino Site Opens With Outdoor Dinner Parties

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Just nine months after North Brooklyn Farms dismantled its plot at Havemeyer Park, it’s returning at a new location and hosting some al fresco, farm-to-table dinners.

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Rent Guidelines Board Votes For Historic Rent Freeze; ‘Right Call,’ Says De Blasio

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

Nearly two hours after the Rent Guidelines Board was scheduled to vote on whether more than 1.2 million New Yorkers would be required to pay more for their rent-regulated apartments, the board made a historical decision to freeze rent increases for one-year leases. Amidst intermittent boos and cheers, the board’s chair, Rachel Godsil, announced that for the first time ever one-year leases would see a zero percent increase in rent, while two-year leases would be subject to a 2 percent increase.

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Reactions Mixed as Albany Renews Rent Laws, With Some Tweaks

A rally earlier this week. (Photo: Sam Gillette)

A rally earlier this week. (Photo: Sam Gillette)

Minutes and hours after Albany extended rent laws for four years, elected officials were already complaining that changes to the laws don’t go far enough.

“Just when it seemed Albany couldn’t get worse, it did,” wrote State Senator Daniel Squadron, whose district includes the Lower East Side, East Village, Greenpoint and Williamsburg. “This year’s legislative session has just ended. I’m sorry to say, there’s a lot to be frustrated and disappointed about. This year offered a chance to extend and strengthen rent laws, but Albany came up short.”

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Tenants Claim ‘Potentially Life-Threatening’ Conditions at 128 Second Ave

(Photo: Jaime Cone)

(Photo: Jaime Cone)

After several months without gas service in their apartments, a group of rent stabilized tenants living in 128 Second Avenue have banded together to sue their landlord, Icon Realty Management. During a rally yesterday outside of New York City Housing Court, residents and elected officials pointed to a number of other “potentially life-threatening” issues that Council Member Rosie Mendez said should land the building owners in jail.

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