Mayor de Blasio Meets with ST/PCV Tenant Leaders
The relaxed gathering was a welcome reversal of the previous administration’s hands-off policy and reflected the Mayor’s determination to create and preserve affordable housing as a key way to address the problems of “the tale of two cities.” He emphasized the need to reverse the trend of the past two decades, which is creating a city where average New Yorkers can no longer afford to live.
Council Member Garodnick kicked off the meeting by reviewing events since Tishman Speyer bought the complex in 2006. Tenants Association president John Marsh then reiterated the four principles which serve as the cornerstone for a tenant-led future: maximizing choices for tenants, protecting long-term affordability, rejecting development on our cherished open spaces, keeping the community as a unified whole, and delivering high quality maintenance.
The TA leaders noted that in addition to affordability, the tenant-led plan hopes to restore the community’s character and stability, providing long-term homes for the middle class rather than temporary housing for transients, as well as to avoid a return of the recent efforts to evict rent-stabilized tenants.
The Mayor was positive and supportive in his responses to all of these points. He noted that his office has already established a period of negotiations with CWCapital to address the many outstanding issues, and agreed that the Tenants Association would have a seat at the table in this discussion. His overarching goal was to protect the long-term affordability of this community—and with that, we wholeheartedly agree. The Mayor was clear from his commentary that he believes that Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village are an important part of the city’s affordable housing stock, and that he will be actively engaged to work toward a positive outcome for tenants, and for the city.
State Senator Brad Hoylman and Assemblymember Brian Kavanagh spoke of the importance of strengthening rent regulations and to make certain that J-51/Roberts tenants are not thrown to the wolves when their legal protections expire in 2020. Also attending the meeting were Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, and Minna Elias, Chief of Staff for Congresswoman Maloney.