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Sunday, March 8, 2009

Appellate Division Decision is Great News

Much has been made in the past few days about the decision by the Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court that Tishman Speyer, according to the NY Times, "wrongfully raised rents and deregulated thousands of apartments after receiving special tax breaks."

The NY Times continues: "The decision ... could ultimately cost the landlord, Tishman Speyer Properties, $200 million if it is required to repay residents of more than 3,000 apartments for improper rent increases over the past four years, said a lawyer for the tenants."

While various voices in the commentary section of the Lux Living blog raise concerns about a lessening of services and security should Tishman Speyer be forced to foreclose on this property, a point to remember is that a landlord must maintain basic services, so that whoever will be in charge has to provide legally mandated services and security to Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village. I also don't think it's a bad idea, should the complex start "falling apart," that tenants pick up the slack and spruce up their buildings and adjacent grounds. If tenants became stewards of their own turft, then perhaps we'd see these buildings shine as they are supposed to and residents become more responsible and interested in what goes on in ST and PCV. Certainly the current state of affairs, via services and security, is not that glowing. Energized tenants can do much better than the clowns at Tishman Speyer. And if we can't, then we are just as much the clowns as Tishman Speyer & Company and we deserve what we get.

But....

It's not over till the fat lady sings. It is still possible that Tishman Speyer will get a reversal on the appellate ruling.

Nevertheless, right now this is a very positive outcome for affordable housing in Manhattan. The tide just may be turning.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The idea that if TS is forced into bankruptcy, SOMEONE will come provide the services is just plain wrong. Regardless of whether or not such action is "legally mandated," there are hundreds if not thousands of examples all over the city, of buildings where the landlords are NOT providing those services. And I've never seen a strong inclination on the part of tenants here to "spruce up" their buildings.

No matter how much one dislikes TS, foreclosure will NOT be a good thing. People will YEARN for the days when they had an owner who had some resources. We'll be complaining about a hell of alot more than what the oval looks like.