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Slate Property Group Renovates 151-153 Ludlow St., While Tenants Organize

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151-153 Ludlow St.

The residents of 151-153 Ludlow St. are mobilizing to protect their homes, as a controversial new property owner moves forward with extensive renovations.

During the summer, two six-story walkup buildings were acquired for $10 million by Slate property Group, a real estate firm with an infamous reputation on the Lower East Side. [Slate is co-owner of Rivington House and at the center of the deed restriction scandal that rocked the de Blasio administration].

A couple of weeks ago, we first noticed the newly created Instagram feed of the 151-153 Ludlow Tenants Association. The group has been documenting the construction work taking place in the buildings, and publicizing a meeting with the property owner scheduled for next week.

Representatives of the tenant association told us, “there are many vacancies in both buildings.” They said Slate plans to renovate the apartments and then rent them as market rate units. A tenant association rep added,”The tenants remaining are all rent-stabilized, and some have been targeted by Slate” for possible eviction. There’s a large backyard adjacent to one of the buildings. Residents say Slate plans to enlarge ground floor commercial spaces, eliminating the backyard.

“Our focus,” the tenant rep said, “is on maintaining safe and sanitary living environments while this is going on, and on keeping folks in their longtime homes.” The group has been working with the Urban Justice Center and Good Old Lower East Side (GOLES). “With their back up, we have began to meet with Slate face-to-face as a group to address our issues and to get solutions.”   The building, residents say, “is inhabited by a range folks, children to elders, from all over the world.  Many tenants are creatives: artists, designers, makers, and neighborhood celebrities alike, maintaining culture in the Lower East Side community.”

The mayor has said that Slate misled the city in the Rivington House transaction, but he has also indicated there’s nothing his administration can do to re-acquire the Rivington House facility. Several days before a mayoral election, a stop work order remains in effect at Rivington House.

We’re told that local elected officials are aware of the situation in the Ludlow Street buildings. State Assemblywoman Yuh-Line Niou will have a representative at next week’s meeting. Slate executives have been in touch with her office.

 

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