Comment Policy

All comments to posts have to await approval. Approval does not happen immediately. NOTE: Comments reflect the opinions of the person writing them and should not be assumed to reflect the opinion of the blog.

Management has two priorities: 1) Making sure money is made, hence upgrading and filling up apartments is their goal. "Amenities" are important in selling the place, though few residents use them. 2) If someone needs medical attention, Public Safety will be there, if alerted.

Quality of life issues are not that important, however. They tend to be ignored, despite "the rules." So you will see a lot that isn't taken care of properly, and complaints will be met with a creative excuse and a smile.

"Peace and quiet" must be a cruel joke, though this property is sold that way. There can be no peace and quiet as ALL apartments must be upgraded, which includes the installation of an AC unit below the window. Aside from the continual construction about the neighborhood, there is a new and noisy subway extension being built along East 14 st and the shut down of the L line. "Choosing" to live in NYC, now the newest mantra, is a fabrication when the talk is of ST and PCV, which was traditionally quiet, with no construction noise.

Though money was always important, it is now more important than ever. Money rules many things, as you will find.

At this point, 30 years into living here and seeing many things, I can state that Management and their reps are BS-ing us. I can't say that loudly enough: We are being BS-ed. I don't see any genuine change. Sorry.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

"In 2006, 28% of the apartments there were rented at market rate. Today it's 50%...."



Fascinating, yet depressing, interview with Charles V. Bagli, author of the just-published book "Other People's Money: Inside the Housing Crisis and the Demise of the Greatest Real Estate Deal Ever Made".

The interview, as well as the book probably, really makes you hate the real estate people, banks and politicians who screwed up Stuy Town/Peter Cooper Village. I've stated this before, but I just don't understand why some people are not in jail because of what happened and what is happening.

Interview:

http://www.amny.com/urbanite-1.812039/q-a-with-charles-v-bagil-the-deal-that-turned-stuy-town-upside-down-1.4995177

The book is available at all fine book stores, and also Amazon.com for hardcover at $15.98 and  Amazon.com for $14.99 Kindle edition.

54 comments:

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to read this book! You are right, someone should have gone to jail. A few people should have gone to jail. The whole thing has the stench of corruption. Rob Speyer has been "punished" by being made the head of the "Save New York" nonsense. Save New York from the likes of Rob Speyer! I'll never vote for Cuomo again for rewarding this little punk with that job. New York politicians and Real Estate people stink. They should all be .... well, I can't finish my thought because you would not be able to print it! Thank you, STR.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

"The strategy is to turn over (increase) rents."

This has been pointed out before: If the "strategy" is to turn over rents, does that strategy include putting in temporary renters (ie, students)? Surely, yes. But doesn't this strategy go directly against the spirit of rent stabilization and very core of affordable rental units? Why haven't the people who crafted and executed this "strategy" been held legally liable for such assuredly tricky and malicious maneuvers? Why haven't our politicians, at the very least, taken a stand against this strategy and made an abundant amount of noise to shame our landlords?

Anonymous said...

"Why haven't our politicians, at the very least, taken a stand against this strategy and made an abundant amount of noise to shame our landlords?"

Because i) they have no balls; and ii) they are in the pockets of the landlords.

Anonymous said...

Dan Garodnick took a stand.

Now we have a 7 month weekly farmer's market, ice skating rink, loud obnoxious summer concerts, dog shit all over the place, whooping frat house tenants, diminished services since Hurricane Sandy.

Help me if I've forgotten anything.

Yep, thanks Dan . A swell public advocate.

Anonymous said...

Bad business decisions? Yes.

Illegal? Not sure if anything done was illegal. No one forced the investors to buy.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

Oh, I'm not referring to the investors. I'm referring to the strategy by a landlord to turn over apartments rapidly to increase rents.

Anonymous said...

Dirty little strategies by a dirty little landlord. Remember that Julius Tishman built the first tenements in NYC, so the Tishman family and its decedentents have been making a nice living off the flesh and blood of the "little people" for well over a century. It's in the blood. Tishman Speyer + Blackrock = Blood Sucking Parasites.

Anonymous said...

To my knowledge, no one investigated the accuracy of te representations made by TS to the trust who provided the mortgage or, more to the point, to the second tier lenders and equity investors - some of which were pension funds. If they were false, that would be a crime. And what kind of chicanery caused CALPERS, CALSTRS and the state of Florida pension to invest around
$1 billion - all of which is now gone. Maybe I am just a cynic but do you think there may have been some wrongdoing here?

Anonymous said...

"Oh, I'm not referring to the investors. I'm referring to the strategy by a landlord to turn over apartments rapidly to increase rents."

A strategy that might not be illegal technically, but is certainly a strategy of greed, avarice and a total absence of morals. That's the world we live in, unfortunately. We should never be expected to like it or respect it and have any respect for those who employ this strategy for the sake of their own greedy motivation. I have zero respect for our politicians or those who buy them. All I can do is express my disgust at the voting booth. Even then, I don't believe that democracy is in action because there is so much corruption. Christine Quinn, et al, are expressing disgust at Malcolm Smith and his cronies; meanwhile, she enabled the most corrupt coup as in Bloomberg's illegal third term. Our New York pols and the NY RE cabal just sick and disgust me. We need a total purge from the top down.

Anonymous said...

I am one of the long-suffering rent stabilized tenants who has been here for a long time. They are going to have to shove a stick of dynamite up my ass to make me move. I'll deal with the filthy students and transients because this is my home and I have absolutely no intention of moving. Some of us Boomers are a lot tougher than these avaricious bastards in the RE industry (akin to the drug dealing industry as far as morals go) think we are!

Anonymous said...

Reminder: Time & Location of Roberts Settlement Hearing
 
The settlement hearing will take place at 60 Centre Street, NY, NY, in Courtroom 408, at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, April 9th, 2013. 

Anonymous said...

@ anon April 3, 2013 at 4:35 PM, you forgot the smelly mold in the T entrance of 285 Ave. C.

Anonymous said...

Why are they constantly cutting down trees? The trees are one of the few things that making renting here almost worthwhile.

Anonymous said...

Regardless of what happened to the investors, TS and their "strategy" brought 5000+ apartments to the open market, something this city sorely needs more of. These market rate PCVST apartments are a better deal then the tenement buildings that make up the rest of the EV and LES.

There are two sides of every coin - TS opened up Stuytown to people who could have otherwise never lived here - Whether you old timers like them or not.

Anonymous said...

It's getting to the point where only students in chopped up dorm apartments can afford to live here. They are also the only demographic who don't seem to mind what a shit hole the place has become.

Anonymous said...

We see how easy politicans will jump for cash. Realators have money & motivitation and that is why rent stabilization is undergoing a steady pace toward death

Anonymous said...

The "new" Oval Café-no mention of the "residents and guests" requirement at the site or at the menu. They really don't care anymore about the zoning law and with this kind idiot letter (or maybe not so idiot-hmmm) to the T&V, why would they.
http://town-village.com/2013/04/04/letters-to-the-editor-apr-4/

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ April 3, 2013 at 3:12 PM
"Rob Speyer has been "punished" by being made the head of the "Save New York" nonsense. Save New York from the likes of Rob Speyer! I'll never vote for Cuomo again for rewarding this little punk with that job."

Cuomo didn't give Speyer a job. That PAC is banking early on a Cuomo run for the White House. They own him.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

>>with this kind idiot letter<<

Yeah, I saw that in T & V the other day and will slam it on the main page later.

Anonymous said...

I just posted this at the T&V blog as a response to that "idiot" letter:
"To the person who wrote the letter who wants the Greenmarket open to all. 1. Full disclosure please, do you have a financial interest in GrowNYC ? 2. You obviously do not have a clue or care about the NYC noncommercial zoning law which governs the interior of Stuy Town. Since you do not care about the zoning law, I can’t wait to open, in the apartment right next to your apartment, my Albanian fusion restaurant which will be open to all. “TA will be demanding identity cards from anyone who wishes to play basketball or to sit quietly by the fountain and read a newspaper, or sunbathe on the Oval lawn.” In this case, you are truly clueless. PCVST has publics access to its grounds, walkways, benches outside the playgrounds, etc. That is the law, it goes back to the time when this place was built, anyone can walk into PCVST, anyone can sit on a bench outside the playgrounds. The Oval lawn technically could be limited by CWC to residents and their guests only but CWC chooses not to do so. What CWC can do (and does) is limit access to the playgrounds since they are private and they are listed as so and ID’S are now checked at the basketball playgrounds since there was violence by non-tenants at one and over use by non-tenants at both so that tenants were not able to use them. OK, you want them open to all, YOU can provide the financial resources to have their upkeep and care, carve that expense out my lease. In fact, why don’t you open your apartment to all the “guests” so that they can use your bathroom? Why have CWC follow ANY of the NYS RS laws at all? Lease renewal? Drop dead. The T&V has had ridiculous or self-serving letters before but this one is in the top ten of all time.

Anonymous said...

I just started reading Bagli's book. Why was I not surprised to learn that Jerry Speyer had a hand in Bloomberg's wangling his illegal third term? What filth these people are! We are living in a Plutocracy for sure.

Anonymous said...

>>with this kind idiot letter<<

What's wrong? People who live here are so nasty.
I can't wait until my lease is up.

Anonymous said...

Bye bye 1:50 PM.

I can't wait until your lease is up either.

Gerald Guterman said...

Gerald Guterman:

I appreciate Charles Bagli's book and all of the research that went into creating such an accurate summary of this massive business transaction.

I would like to comment on a number of other postings included earlier today.

To begin; the "Current Market" Rent and "Dormitory Style" Housing:

The "current market" rent now being charged for this Dormitory Style Housing, is being charged to students and other groups of singles, who create much heavier usage on the utilities, the common areas and the apartments themselves. Under all normal and usual conditions, such "dormitory style" usage reduces the area's "quality of life" to a point where ownership housing is no longer desirable or justifiable.

The maintenance, repair and replacement cost to the landlord, is significantly greater for "dormitory style" housing than for the cost of similar expenses incurred for families renting the same property.

Additionally, the continuing turnover of "dormitory style" apartments together with the ever increasing costs for that turnover (rental fees, advertising, clean-up, painting, appliance repair and replacement and all the extra common area costs for such usage [elevators, heating, air conditioning, plumbing and electric lines]etc.,) is not fully recognized by people who are not professional investors in rent stabilized, family-style communities.

These additional costs and expenses will become evident as just a few years begin to pass and the usual wear and tear attributed to family style usage is significantly increased.

Additionally, I am confident that the return on investment required for such "dormitory style" housing will increase, as investors discover that the property has become "student" housing and accurate appraisals correctly reflect the higher costs required and higher rate of return expected, from such housing.

The Oval and other Common Area usage. I believe that all of the STPCV Common Area should be strictly reserved and restricted for the exclusive use of STPCV residents, their family members and guests.

Also, I believe that the "park" look and feel that is so desirable and well known and has made the community so special, must be preserved and protected.

No commercial usage should be condoned and no additional buildings should be constructed.

In order to properly convert STPCV to ownership housing, the current, "dormitory style" usage of the apartments must be eliminated. This will take several years and additional dollars, thereby causing the apartments to become more expensive in order to recoup the additional investment.

Thank you,

Gerald Guterman

Anonymous said...

The Speyers are no better than the Gambinos morally. But they are not nearly as smart!

Anonymous said...

Occasionally I see tenants write defenses of students here, but for the most part sentiment is clearly against the student rentals. It remains to be seen how everything will resolve but clearly the quality of life here has been greatly diminished while the costs have risen. If you doubt this, take a slow walk through PCV and observe all the many areas wore bare by too many footsteps and too many dogs. And for those areas fenced off, does anyone really think that the black landscapers fencing is classier than the old silvery chains.

Anonymous said...

I haven't read Bagli's book yet but I read the interview. Looks like his focus is on the evil done by Tishman-Speyer and Blackrock (where we all agree), but he says very little about the situation post-2010. Without sticking his hand into the current fire, I'm afraid his lack comment about things now makes him more of a historian than a journalist. There was a time when journalists took risks and weren't playing things so much safer.

Anonymous said...

"The Speyers are no better than the Gambinos morally. But they are not nearly as smart!"

Or as good-looking!

Anonymous said...

Just wait until all of 14th Street between 1st and C is converted to high rise condos, and all of those people co-opt Stuyvesant Town's acreage and facilities as their own. Looks like that will be happening within the next 3-5 years as the tract from Avenue A and eastward is already in the works, and the Post Office properties look like they will fall next. Only a matter of time folks, only a matter of time....

Anonymous said...

To Gerald Guterman:

Do you really think you're telling the tenants here anything that we don't already know??? What's your point? That you're the man to deliver us from all this evil? Sure. Like you're so much better than all the other blood sucking, real estate predators out there.

Anonymous said...

Guterman's plan is better than the TA's plan...anyday!

Anonymous said...

I'm only 35 pages into the book, but I am jaw-droppingly appalled at what I'm reading about the racism, both on the part of Ecker (which we already knew about) and the entrenched political forces. Add to that the displacement of thousands of families, virtually none of whom were able to afford to live in the new development, and it's hard to feel good about this place. What's equally clear is that the city (aka Bloomberg) was equally self-interested when it refused to get involved in the sale to Tishman Speyer. After all, the real estate taxes from the sale were enormous, and they underwrite the transit authority.

Anonymous said...

" Anonymous said...
Bye bye 1:50 PM.

I can't wait until your lease is up either.

April 6, 2013 at 4:13 PM"

Really? You took the time to post this? Thanks for validating my statement about people here being so nasty.
It's spring, leave the cats in the apartment and go feed the squirrels. It will do you some good.

Anonymous said...

Guterman's comment provides common sense analysis on anticipated collateral damage student dormitory housing inflicts on residential property.

Other than cheerleading their partnership, we receive almost no useful information from the TA and Brookfield.

Guterman's posts should be welcome on this forum and trolls attacking him for reaching out should be ignored.

Anonymous said...

Dear Apr 9 209pm:

You should be packing instead of reading these silly on-line posts.

Anonymous said...

"Guterman's posts should be welcome on this forum and trolls attacking him for reaching out should be ignored."

You got that right. Unfortunately, I think that there will soon be another bidding war between the usual hungry real estate/developer sharks and we tenants will just be chum. I really think the RE/Developer cabal are no better (maybe a lot worse) than the old-style mob families that used to run New York.

Anonymous said...

I am half way through this book and I am quite impressed by the way Dan Garodnick went toe-to-toe with Rob Speyer concerning Speyer's treatment of the tenants. Speyer was a power-drunk, bullying, odious and unprincipled POS and was trying to kick rent stabilized tenants out as well as pricing market rate tenants out. His methods and tactics were unconscionable. It took some balls to stand up to that creature, especially as he had the Bloomberg cabal on his side. Don't short sell Dan Garodnick because of the stupid green market. He has done a lot for us.

Anonymous said...

"old-style mob families that used to run New York."

Give me a “Crazy Joey” Gallo any day over a Robert Speyer.

Anonymous said...

"old-style mob families that used to run New York."

Give me a “Crazy Joey” Gallo any day over a Robert Speyer.<<

True, New York used to be controlled by the Lucchese, Genovese, Gambino, Bonnano, Columbo families. All crooked and had the politicians in their pockets; all vied with each other; most, if not all, were of Sicilian or Italian descent and gave a bad names to people of their own ethnicity. Today, they are the Speyers, Rudins, Macklowes, Zuckermans, LeFraks, Glucks, Glicks, Kalikow, Kushners, Dursts, Ackermans and quite a few others (Donald Trump snuck in as a token wasp) and they are almost all Jewish and shame their own ethnic bretheren with their dirty dealings. And just like the old Cosa Nostra, their dirty dealings affect everybody, especially the poorest New Yorkers. I'm Italian third generation and I despise the mob and all they did. I know Jewish people who cringe at the mention of the names of some of these Developers and RE moguls, just as we cringe at the mention of Sammy "the Bull" and his kind. Oh, and Bloomberg is their favorite boy!

Anonymous said...

Dan Garodnick stood up to Speyer? Good one...LOL. You must be his campaign manager...LOL...Garodnick stood up to Speyer...that's precious!

Anonymous said...

Guterman's mantra-like restatement of the obvious (i.e. the costs & consequences of dorm living on our existing physical plant) has absolutely been mentioned by the TA & practically any sentient being who's lived here for more than 5 years. It ain't rocket science. Before you fall victim to this particularly odious snake-oil salesman, remember, he makes no bones about the fact that he ain't here as our white knight or long-term partner. He's quite upfront about the fact that he's strictly a wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am kinda developer. He's no friend of ours & (quite openly) looks only for the quick buck. A real love'em & leave'em guy (just like the wisest mothers caution against). Yet another RE slimeball masquerading as our savior (ala Rob Speyer; SEE ALSO front page, right hand column of the STR). Bleeecchh! Nasty tastes all. Must run to gargle.

Anonymous said...

Dan Garodnick has thrown in the towel.

Anonymous said...

"Dan Garodnick stood up to Speyer? Good one...LOL. You must be his campaign manager...LOL...Garodnick stood up to Speyer...that's precious!"

Just read the book.

BTW, I emailed Garodnick recently about something totally not to do with Stuyvesant Town and his office was very helpful. No doubt he has other issues come across his desk quite separate and apart from STPCV. We tenants are not his ONLY constituents, you know.

Anonymous said...

BTW, I emailed Garodnick recently about something totally not to do with Stuyvesant Town and his office was very helpful. No doubt he has other issues come across his desk quite separate and apart from STPCV. We tenants are not his ONLY constituents, you know.

I could not possibly care less about the other things Dan Garodnick does for his other constituents. I care and vote for or against what he does for me. He will always be the guy who is responsible for the commercialization and thus the downfall of PCVST, period. Thus I will never vote for him again no matter what position he is running for, not even dogcatcher. I mean look at the dog crap everywhere around here. I hold him responsible for that too!!!

Anonymous said...

"Dan Garodnick has thrown in the towel."

Can't say I blame him with all the nasty remarks about him on this blog!

Anonymous said...

I just don't understand how Dan Garodnick can be held responsible for what this crappy, half-assed, poor excuse for a "Management" does. They don't have to ask his permission, do they, before they put in one of their stupid bait and switch gimmicks to sucker the out-of-town kids to live here?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"Dan Garodnick has thrown in the towel."

Can't say I blame him with all the nasty remarks about him on this blog!

Then maybe he should stop worrying about making money for his former law firm with the Brookfield deal and instead try doing the right things here in PCVST. We can thank him for the commercial enterprises that will soon fill all PCVST and the bikes on the sidewalks and the late night parties, etc.. Besides screwing us what has he done that was good?

Stuy Town Reporter said...

>>I just don't understand how Dan Garodnick can be held responsible for what this crappy, half-assed, poor excuse for a "Management" does. They don't have to ask his permission, do they, before they put in one of their stupid bait and switch gimmicks to sucker the out-of-town kids to live here?<<

Pit bulls are not permitted in Stuy Town/PCV. But there is one pit bull that is permitted, however: the human kind. We need a politician here who will be a pit bull for affordable housing. Garodnick is pleasant and nice-looking, but he ain't a pit bull.

Anonymous said...

Any ideas on who might replace Garodnick when his term is up?

Stuy Town Reporter said...

Well, he's got a third term coming up, doesn't he?

Anonymous said...

"Well, he's got a third term coming up, doesn't he?"

I thought he was running for some other office in the election this year.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

He was running for comptroller but bowed out. Now he's running for his seat again.

Anonymous said...

This book by Charles V. Bagli is very good. It shows the arrogance, ignorance and sheer stupidity of the Speyers, BlackRock, et al. Recommended reading. Unfortunately, it ends with no real end in sight. I hope Mr. Bagli continues to monitor STPCV and document what goes on here. It is so easy to throw out the baby with the bath water in order to make a quick buck, but what does it achieve in the end? As I write this, I can hear the Bros and Dudes braying and hooting outside my building, where adults (not all senior citizens, just grown-ups) are trying to sleep, hoping to keep their babies asleep and trying to live like normal, adult human beings who work hard and try to raise their kids in a decent environment. It's not easy in a place that has become an off-campus dorm with hooting, braying, immature students letting off steam. I don't know where it will all end, but it really is a sad reflection on New York City that we native New Yorkers have to bend over and take it from these avaricious real estate sharks, a corporate mayor and invasions of contemptuous kids from the 'burbs and be treated like shit in the homes we have loved and cherished and worked hard for all our lives. The ironic thing is that these young turks are making Manhattan exactly the kind of place that makes real New Yorkers shudder at the thought of! They are bringing their suburbs to Manhattan and eventually, Manhattan will be just like where they came from and they will be clawing to get out! Anybody for a bike ride? Starbucks? Dairy Queen? Seven Eleven? Why leave the 'burbs when it is all here! What made Manhattan so unique and sophisticated is being totally destroyed by these idiots! I think I'll move to Springfield, Flyovia for a little authenticity!

Anonymous said...

Amen, 12.34. Amen.