The Real Deal New York

Hanging chads? Vote to privatize Southbridge Towers probed

Whisker-thin margin draws attention of city agency
October 14, 2014 02:20PM

A plan to turn a 1,067-unit affordable housing complex in the Financial District private is now being investigated by the Division of Housing and Community Renewal.

Two-thirds of residents at Southbridge Towers, located at 90 Beekman Place, voted to turn their subsidized co-ops into market rate apartments. The result means unit owners who paid as little as $10,000 for their units decades ago could potentially sell them for as much as $1 million.

The Division of Housing and Community Renewal, the agency that oversees the complex, is investigating the margin by which the vote passed. Owners needed 1,072 votes to privatize the building. A total of 1,082 “yes” votes were counted.

The complex voted to go private earlier this month following months of intense debate. [Curbed] — Kerry Barger