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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.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Questions To Be Answered

In preparation for the forthcoming meeting between tenants and Blackstone this Saturday, 1pm, at Baruch College, I will be listing questions that I feel need answering (though, truthfully, we can already suspect the answers or equivocations on a good number of them). This is a fluid list, so if you'd like to add to it, please do so in the comment section, whereupon I will place your questions here if they are pertinent. Also be aware that I will be away periodically from internet access and unable to monitor these comments immediately. But I will get to them eventually! Thanks.

1) The agreement secures a portion of the apartments here as "affordable housing" for the next twenty years. What happens after those 20 years?

2) Is there anything in the agreement that has tenants surrendering their normal RS rights at any time in the future?

3) Roberts case tenants will have a cap placed on their rent after 2020 at 5%. Is this 5% yearly? Is there any cap on rent for these tenants in the years before 2020?

4) Will MCIs continue to be requested on this property by Blackstone?

5) Will another entity replace CompassRock to run and maintain the property?

6) Will Blackstone use the possibility of STPCV's "air-rights" to sell to another entity in the city?

7) Will non-renovated apartments continue to get renovated once their tenants leave or die?

8) Will Blackstone continue to partition apartments with new walls to effectively add a new room to the existing room count?

9) Will Blackstone continue solicit a student population to rent here and market to this population?

10) How will Blackstone make sure that no more than three unrelated people occupy an apartment?

11) How will Blackstone make sure that the dog rules of STPCV are adhered to, particularly in regard to size and breed limits, which have been basically ignored by current management for years now.

12) How will Blackstone make sure that our walkways are properly cleaned and fixed?

13) Will Blackstone continue the practice of unwelcome "wake-up calls" from early morning construction, renovation, leaf-blowing?

14) Will tenants be able to read the full agreement, not just a summary?

15) Will tenants be able to find out just what the dynamics are of the tenant population here; ie, how many tenants live in non-renovated apartment, how many are "Roberts case" tenants, market-rate tenants, how many apartments are currently filled by students?

16) Will there be any additions to existing buildings?

17) Will there be any changes to the Oval area?

18) Will there be retail stores in the Oval area--for "residents and their guests" of course!

19) Will there be any checks that only "residents and their guests" are using the facilities and amenities of STPCV. (Currently there are no such checks at Oval Cafe or the Green Market.)

20) With the mandate to secure a portion of the units here as "affordable," how does Blackstone and its Canadian partner envision achieving a healthy profit from the property after acquiring it for 5.3 billion dollars?

21) Does Blackstone see itself as selling the property within the next 50 years? In other words, how long range is Blackstone's commitment to STPCV?

22) After 20 years, will Blackstone have the freedom to level the current buildings here and build a new complex of high-valued high rises?

23) Will the lottery for new "affordable" housing include current residents or will it be open only to potential new renters?

24) If the lottery is for current residents also, will the winners have to move out of their current apartment to one that is selected by Blackstone?

25) When did the TA know that this deal was in the works and that tenant ownership was a dead issue? When did our councilman, Dan Garodnick, know?

26) Will Blackstone still retain a dog-friendly policy to new renters?

27) Will MR tenants be bearing the burden of higher-than-normal rent increases to make up for gaps caused by more rent-protected units?

28) Associated Supermarket on 14th Street has been a vital presence in this community, offering affordable goods to our population, some of whom are on fixed incomes. Will Blackstone offer a reasonable lease-renewal to Associated or drive them out for a more deluxe entity with deluxe prices to match?

29) (To the TA/Garodnick) How did we get to this point with a deal to another huge corporation like Blackstone?

30) (To the TA/Garodnick) Why did the effort to convert die without even so much as a whimper? There are upwards of 30,000 people in this complex that they sold this idea to. Did they think we'd just forget?

31) How did there get to be a buyer without tenants being given serious consideration as a buyer? Why would CW Capital prefer one buyer over another if they both could potentially have the financing?

32) Assuming that apartment renovations and MCIs continue, will the new tenants in "affordable" units have an unpleasant surprise after 20 years with a rent that will be adjusted to reflect the renovations and MCIs and that will go far beyond the previouis $3,200 cap for these apartments?

33) Will there ever be a time when STPCV will be free from construction, renovation and the disruption and noise from these? A time when residents can finally live in peace?

43 comments:

Anonymous said...

23 - Have been told Lottery is for anyone - no preference whatsoever to current tenants.

Anonymous said...

Just saw a new MCI that is posted on the tenants association website. I have had it here. Take a look. You are not going to believe it.

Anonymous said...

Will MR tenants be bearing the burden of higher-than-normal rent increases to make up for gaps caused by more rent-protected units?

Billsville said...

Ask them if they plan to push Associated out in order bring in a new grocery store. Town & Village is reporting that CW Capital just offered Assocated $750k to leave before their lease is up. Did Blackstone know about this, and do they plan to push Associated out?

CW made Associated offer to end lease early
The owners of the Associated Supermarket in Stuyvesant Town — who, as Town & Village reported last month — were losing faith they’d be given a lease renewal by CWCapital, finally got that elusive phone call from the landlord.

It just wasn’t the one they wanted.

The offer? Take three quarters of a million dollars to walk away before the lease even ends in two years, one source with knowledge of the situation told Town & Village. However, the store’s principal owner Joseph Falzon felt he could make more if he rode out the rest of the lease term.

Michael Feld said...

Not sure if the question list is in order of priority or just a brain dump, but my personal opinion is that all questions related to how the deal happened should be asked first, i.e.:

1. How did we get to this point with a deal to another huge corporation like Blackstone?
2. Why wasn't there even a discussion of a tenant with CW Capital?
3. Why did the effort to convert die without even so much as a whimper? There are upwards of 30,000 people in this complex that they sold this idea to. Did they think we'd just forget?

All of this smacks of a sweetheart deal. From what I can see and what I've read, this is all designed to make politicians look good come election time and fuel the development of and investment in other areas of the city. If they sold to tenants, none of that would happen. It would be a single-entry story about how some tenants stood up for their rights and took over their own complex as opposed to a huge conglomerate that will be theoretically pouring money into the city's coffers by building and upgrading and drawing new business in.

The more I look at that video of the press conference and think about the spin game that's going on here, the more it makes these people look like a bunch callow transparent political hacks or some people taking us for naive -- or both.

Anonymous said...

TAKE AWAY ASSOCIATED. WHERE THE F DO THEY WANT US TO SHOP FOR FOOD. W T F , SOMEONE STOP THESE ASSHOLES. WHERE IS OUR MAYOR, OUR CITY, OUR COMMUNITY BOARD ONT HESE

Anonymous said...

29: can you hose off sidewalks daily like all other building owners do in NYC? Hoses Not Blowers

Anonymous said...

If I were Dan and Steinberg, I would run as far from this meeting as I could.

Anonymous said...

$750k is a very measly sum to offer them to walk away! Maybe I'd accept that to give up my unrenovated apartment, but a business like Associated? The CW creeps are really at the Ebenezer Scrooge end of the spectrum! I bet they save their piss to brew up coffee because they are so cheap.

Anonymous said...

They are just rubbing their two hands together waiting for Associated's lease to expire. They ain't coming back. They have other plans. Like knocking it down and building more units. Isn't that what its all about?

Anonymous said...


CW made Associated offer to end lease early.


By Sabina Mollot

The owners of the Associated Supermarket in Stuyvesant Town — who, as Town & Village reported last month — were losing faith they’d be given a lease renewal by CWCapital, finally got that elusive phone call from the landlord.

It just wasn’t the one they wanted.

The offer? Take three quarters of a million dollars to walk away before the lease even ends in two years, one source with knowledge of the situation told Town & Village. However, the store’s principal owner Joseph Falzon felt he could make more if he rode out the rest of the lease term.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

>>Not sure if the question list is in order of priority or just a brain dump, but my personal opinion is that all questions related to how the deal happened should be asked first, i.e.:

1. How did we get to this point with a deal to another huge corporation like Blackstone?
2. Why wasn't there even a discussion of a tenant with CW Capital?
3. Why did the effort to convert die without even so much as a whimper? There are upwards of 30,000 people in this complex that they sold this idea to. Did they think we'd just forget?<<

Some brain dump in there, particularly as I went on. BTW, Michael, your second question is missing something. Do you mean discussion of a tenant "buyout"? I think the TA/Garodnick covered this one, in that CW was even interested in talking. But if you can clarify your question, I'll put it up. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

This for That and both Brookfield and Blackstone make 10X their investment in very little time


Were we traded in a rich get richer hoarding scheme? As if a basic right of a constituents home is inconsequential New York politicians.

http://www.thedeal.com/content/private-equity/blackstone-makes-close-to-4-times-money-on-sale-of-center-parcs-to-brookfield.php

Anonymous said...

They could care less if you starved to death. Keep churning baby, keep churning.

Anonymous said...

October 23, 2015 at 1:25 PM That is because NY politicians are denying us basic human rights, food, clothing, shelter by letting Blackstone, Brookfield, and their ilk get bigger and bigger, amass more and more just like they let the banks get too big to fail. NY politicians bailed out Speyer and they are repeating the same Wall Street Too Big To Fail with RE. NY politicians are screwing us for a buck and a headline.

Anonymous said...

The sad human part about this is that we have our hands tied behind our backs and there's not much we can do, but live life one day at a time, you know?

Anonymous said...

http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-stuyvesant-town-deal-sweetener-1445554680

Stuyvesant Town Air Rights

Anonymous said...

Brookfield and Blackstone just switched places but they are in on the same deal Paul Weiss Rifkind / Moelis put together. The switch of these two interchangeable RE entities needed little nuancing and timing in terms.....patience and the condo conversion could happen still. They just didn't yet make their eviction churning numbers even with the help of the brazenly obvious Steinberg Brewer Salacan Schneiderman tenant airbnb witch hunts that Salacan bragged about in the New York Times.
Did she hunt for illegal dorms? NO
Just since 2012 hunted for possible evictions, even when the tenant was innocent they were hunted.
This TA is not by any stretch of the imagination an advocate for tenants. They are all about business and palling with politicians.

Anonymous said...

OUT OF CONTROL

http://www.barrons.com/articles/SB122066888768606315

IS NO DIFFERENT THEN TOO BIG TO FAIL

CUOMO GARODNICK SCHNEIDERMAN STRINGER ARE USING POLITICAL OFFICES TO CREATE ANOTHER TOO BIG TO FAIL OPERATION WITH NEW YORK REAL ESTATE / AND GLOBAL REAL ESTATE.

IF THEY HAD A SHRED OF DECENCY, MORALITY, ETHICS THEY WOULD HAVE HELD ROB SPEYER ACCOUNTABLE INSTEAD OF CONTINUING HIS SCHEME WITH BROOKFIELD AND NOW BLACKSTONE.

THEY ARE NOT WORTHY OF AMERICAN POLITICAL OFFICE

Anonymous said...

You New yorkers are living under the most corrupt policitians in the country. Sad for you.

Anonymous said...

You New yorkers are living under the most corrupt policitians in the country. Sad for you.

Anonymous said...

What we don't need tomorrow is President Steinberg curating the questions.

Anonymous said...

Please someone ask how our elected officials and TA - the ones who'd been raising people's hopes about tenant ownership - stood there at the Mayor's press conference, smiling, saying they'd saved the community, without once ever asking the community what they thought about another corporate landlord taking over. For almost 10 years the residents of this community fought for their rights against greedy corporate landlords. We earned the right to have a voice regarding our future here. To have an ownership stake in it if need be. And instead, they gave it away to another corporate landlord in a deal that happened behind our backs! Not one public hearing? Not one chance for us to actually voice our opinion on the matter. We earned that. It's disrespectful to the efforts of this community and they should all be ashamed of themselves.

Anonymous said...

Why any of you are surprised about 'AIR rights' is almost laughable. What in the fuck were you expecting? free rent?

Anonymous said...

The TA will use anyone who attends this meeting to point out the huge support they have from tenants. If you must attend you should wear a sign that says you do not support the Tenants Association. Otherwise, how would Blackstone know that only 3% of tenants are dues paying members of the Tenants Association. You couldn't pay me to attend.

Anonymous said...

An excellent list of questions. I doubt that they will have answers for many of them because I do not think much is going to change here.

Anonymous said...

Why not send this list directly to Blackstone/Ivanhoe Cambridge @ Info@StuytownPeterCooper.com? It's the email address they have provided to tenants in handouts and on the website they just set up: http://www.stuytownpetercooper.com/ . Let them know what kinds of questions they will be asked to answer tomorrow.

Atomic Man said...

The MCI posted on the TA site is unbelievable.

MCI for exterior restoration! Restoration by definition is NOT an improvement, it maintenance for chrissakes!

And you just know Cuomo's RE patsys at the DHCR will rubber stamp this as usual. After all, landlord can't afford to make basic repairs unless there's a rent increase in it for them!

Anonymous said...

STR your coverage and forum for tenants is amazing. Thank you.

Michael Feld said...

>>BTW, Michael, your second question is missing something. Do you mean discussion of a tenant "buyout"?

Whoops, sorry, I read my own post too quickly and left out that word, but yes, buyout.

I guess I mean more recently. How did there get to be a buyer without tenants being given serious consideration as a buyer? Does CW Capital just not like them personally? Why would CW Capital prefer one buyer over another if they both could potentially have the financing? It all just seems kind of fishy to me. Does that make sense?

Stuy Town Reporter said...

>>Why not send this list directly to Blackstone/Ivanhoe Cambridge @ Info@StuytownPeterCooper.com? It's the email address they have provided to tenants in handouts and on the website they just set up: http://www.stuytownpetercooper.com/ . Let them know what kinds of questions they will be asked to answer tomorrow.<<

I was thinking of just doing that.

Anonymous said...

Michael: honestly, you really think they would take a bid from 22,000 tenants who are all over the place, arguing, bickering, low rents, high rents vs. Blackstone or Tishman or ... ? Really?

Anonymous said...

foreclosure or no foreclosure
auction or no auction
nothing is kosher about the way these deals went down
so yeah, i think a tenant bid could have happened if the mayor made good on his promise and was really a progressive and found a way to do a penn south tenant ownership co-op plan instead of the status quo corporate ownership of housing assets and not homes. its a joke any of these guys call themselves progressive or reformers. they are the furthest thing from it.

Anonymous said...

Even if they answer these questions, they wont be honest and there will be a lot of double talk.

Anonymous said...

6:57

Your assumptions of 22,000 bickering tenants with widely disparate opinions is painfully naive and an all too easy assumption for the uninformed.

Anonymous said...

I am anxious to hear how Blackstone will respond to the question of whether it will continue to market and rent to students. How else can they fill the 50% market rate apartments! A no-brainer. The writing is on the wall. Dorm/Hotel Dump continues.

Anonymous said...

I would be satisfied if #Blackstone would make QOL issues of daily living a priority: clean sidewalks, enforce carpet rules, end use of diesel vehicles on property, cease gasoline leaf blowers, maintain sanitary laundry facilities, stop dividing up apartments into dorm like configurations, and don't rent to groups of unrelated occupants. Oh and replace Campus Wreck as property managers. Good luck to one and all.

Anonymous said...

I would be satisfied if they'd lower my ridiculously high rent and also got rid of CR

Anonymous said...

12 24 reply. Naive or not, it's true. Reason #1 they did not sell to us. And I'm not that poster.

Anonymous said...

Er, time to stop talking about a tenant buyout. It's over. Try to focus.

Anonymous said...

12 24 I am quite sure it is you who are sadly naive and uninformed - check your real estate book.

Harriet said...

I think this is definitely a strong move in the right direction. 5,000 units to be preserved for the middle class.The REAL middle class. Councilmember Girodnick and the Mayor as well as other elected officials and the TA are to be congratulated. Do not be put off by the endless carping by tenants who still think they can get some sort of condo deal. They can't. No one but the upper upper middle class would be able to afford even an insider deal. Keeping this development as a rental property is the way to go. A big vote of confidence for you all.

Anonymous said...

I already sent this, but maybe I did something wrong. All elected officials and the TA did a terrific job making this deal. Who dreamed that 5,000 units of middle class housing would be preserved for the REAL middle class not for the naïve folks who think that they can get an affordable condo for an insider price. That is not a possibility. People who can afford a condo at current prices are not middle class. This deal is something to be proud of and a model for other developments. Best wishes to all of you.