LandlordsNY Briefing for February 11th

Stanley Brezenoff, the outgoing chairman of the New York City Housing Authority, is not pleased with the deal Mayor Bill de Blasio and United States Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson came to at the end of January. Mr. Brezenoff refused to sign the deal, claiming (correctly) that the federal government has slashed the amount of funding it provides to NYCHA for decades, and then blames the predictable chaos and mismanagement of the housing agency on the city. “The city and NYCHA have all the responsibility, limited authority and all the financial burden,” Mr. Brezenoff said.

Mr. Brezenoff’s refusal to sign onto the deal is one of the reasons why he will be departing the agency. Meanwhile, the federal government has appointed a monitor (to be paid for by the city) to oversee the operations of the housing authority in exchange for an additional $2.2 billion of funding over 10 years meant to help to fix NYCHA’s crumbling buildings. This is just shy of the $32 billion that will be needed within the next five years to keep the nation’s largest public housing system from collapsing.

The New York Times has more.


Silverstein Properties may build 2 World Trade Center on spec. Though the foundation of the building has been completed for some time, construction has stalled on the 80-story project because it has yet to find an anchor tenant.

It now appears that Silverstein’s principal, Larry Silverstein, is tired of waiting. He recently told Bloomberg that the state of the economy and leasing momentum are strong enough that he no longer considers building on spec to be a risky move.

Should construction on the tower begin soon, the 2.8 million-square-foot project could be finished by 2022 or 2023.

The Real Deal has more.


In a Landlords New York Minute – A (Very) Brief Look Around the World

The United Kingdom posted its slowest growth (as measured by gross domestic product) in six years (1.4 percent for 2018), Brexit may lead to another Scottish vote for independence, and Iran is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the 1979 revolution today. Congressional leaders and the White House are at an impasse over border security, which may lead to another partial government shutdown as early as the end of the week; President Donald Trump will sign an executive order later this week that will make the development of artificial intelligence a major priority, though there were few specifics as to what the initiative will actually do to promote artificial intelligence; and a Connecticut businessman believes that Amazon’s HQ2 campus should be split between the Bronx and Stamford, Connecticut, rather than based solely in Long Island City. Millions of Americans are discovering that the Trump tax cut reduces the amounts of their refunds, the Green New Deal is a bold idea to some and sometime to be derided without specific criticism for others, Gowanus residents are up in arms over a rezoning plan that does not include provisions for more affordable housing, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s approval ratings have fallen to an eight-year low of 43 percent, the governor may expand the types of bottles that qualify for a nickel deposit, there is a mysterious black ooze coming out of an exhaust vent at the 23rd Street station on Eighth Avenue subway line, and the New York Daily News’ editorial department tried to talk some sense into residents of Brooklyn Heights. Finally, City Limits broke down the recent eviction data that was released by the city.

Hiring a jack (or jill) of all trades may boost innovation when compared to hiring one of their specialized counterparts, there is a gynandromorphic (presenting both male and female traits) cardinal in Erie, some Russian islands are being invaded by polar bears, an Indonesian prisoner was harassed with a snake, there may be a “pest boom” following a decline in many non-pest insects, honeybees can do basic math, homemade moonshine is a major problem in India, there are too many dead people in England, an Ikea map omitted New Zealand, and the Grammy Awards were last night.

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