This Week in Comments

New York /
Nov.November 20, 2009 01:26 PM

Vantage accused of tenant violations at Washington Heights building
If the building is as bad as is alleged then why would only five of the 80 tenants file suit? Seems to me that with a building in that neighborhood it wouldn’t be hard to find 40 people who were pissed at the landlord just because the landlord was rich. Five of 80 makes it clear to me that the landlord is doing a great job.

What, if anything, should the city do to help stalled development projects in New York?
1. Do nothing, let prices fall [and] new developers will come in and buy the notes from the banks. Their new basis in the project will be low enough that affordable market-rate housing can be built. More supply is good for everyone.
2. The city should just intervene in cases of emergency and dangerous situation to the public. Vacant construction sites impact neighborhoods. Other than that, let banks deal with it.

Roth-Sporn Group leaves Elliman to start firm targeting foreign buyers
I don’t work there, but I have noticed that whenever a group within the company “brands” itself as a separate group within the company, they wind up leaving. Sounds like the concept needs to be rethought at the management level.

Fogging up the vision machine
It should be noted that 100 11th Avenue has the same problem that the Meier West Street buildings have — they turn their backs quite seriously on their neighbors to the east. While it is perfectly understandable that they take advantage of the river views to the west it is not mutually exclusive to an eastern facade of some sympathy. The Nouvel choice of black is extremely unfortunate for those looking west from an upland position. A permanent black silhouette, a day or night shroud, without interest or merit and hardly animated by the windows that are almost invisible from a distance. For so skillful and sensitive an architect to miss an opportunity to be a generous neighbor is terribly unfortunate.

Scaffolding kills life of UES “living wall”
Not only is it an eyesore, but can you imagine having a retail business under one of these contraptions? I feel for the retailer in a long lease who, when [negotiating] the terms, did not take [into] account their visibility would be obstructed for possibly years at a time. No doubt there is a loss of revenue.

Is now a good time to buy a vacation home in South Florida? Has that market hit bottom?
Already one in four homes in South Florida [is] in foreclosure or late on their payments. Hard to imagine how it would get way worse.

Developer looks up for restaurant design

I think it’s a great idea. For restaurants that rely on reputation rather than street traffic and walk-ins, why not locate on the 11th floor of a 30-story office tower? Getting the city’s onerous zoning and building code regulations to permit this, however, sounds like a nightmare.


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