City closes down illegal Airbnb hostel in Greenpoint warehouse

The listing was shut down a few days after the Oakland warehouse fire
December 20, 2016 09:07AM

502 Morgan Avenue (credit: NYC Department of Buildings via NY Post)

The city shut down an illegal hostel-style Airbnb rental in Brooklyn that also doubled as a concert venue, citing potential fire hazards.

The warehouse at 502 Morgan Avenue in Greenpoint had five windowless, crowded bedrooms and an illegally installed gas line, the New York Post reported. The city raided the warehouse over potential fire hazards in the building on Dec. 7, just five days after a fire in an Oakland, Calif., warehouse killed 36 people. The Oakland warehouse, known as “Ghost Ship,” was also a warehouse turned artist living and performance space.

“We are relieved no one was hurt,” city spokesperson Melissa Grace told the Post. “We urge New Yorkers and visitors to be aware of dangers posed by illegal housing and performance spaces – and report them to 311 no matter where in the city they occur.”

The city ordered the warehouse’s operator, Zack Wheeler, to vacate but didn’t impose any additional fines or charges. Airbnb recently settled its lawsuit with New York City over the recent legislation that threatens users with fines of up to $7,500 for illegal listings.  [NYP] — Kathryn Brenzel