In the ongoing battle to provide more affordable housing to New Yorkers, the city has drawn up a new proposal that might just get developers clamoring to build more below-market units. The Economic Development Corporation has issued a request for proposals from developers who would, in exchange for no-cost air rights, provide a permanently affordable housing program that maximizes the number of units available and their affordability.
Photo courtesy of Airbnb via Facebook.
Controversial room-sharing startup Airbnb, one of the most visible players in what is being called the “sharing economy,” has recently awakened the innovation vs. regulation argument in all the usual ways–and a few new ones, including the accusation that these short-term rentals are depleting the already-scarce affordable housing stock in pricey metro areas like San Francisco and New York City.
Photo © Cameron Baylock
Among neighborhoods primed to be the next untapped frontier, Ridgewood isn’t a newcomer. This low-key community on the western border of Queens has seen a steady migration of L-train riders, including the young and restless fleeing Williamsburg and professionals looking for a safe, accessible, quiet ‘hood to call home. In New York City, where every square foot vies for “next big thing” status, Ridgewood is a smart alternative to its headline-stealing North Brooklyn neighbors, Bushwick and Williamsburg, for anyone looking to invest in an up-and-coming residential area.
You may not recognize Karim Rashid immediately, but odds are you have at least one of his designs in your home. A staunch believer that everyone deserves access to great design no matter what their budget (it’s what he calls “designocrasy”), Karim has become one of the world’s most celebrated designers having brought thousands of new ideas and innovations to the widest-possible audience. As such, Karim has won hundreds of international awards, including the prestigious Red Dot, and his work can be found in more than 20 permanent collections including those of the MoMA, Centre Pompidou, and SFMOMA. Karim also calls everyone from Umbra to Giorgio Armani, Kenzo, Alessi, Artemide and Veuve Clicquot as his clients, and Time magazine once described him as the “most famous industrial designer in all the Americas”.
Clearly having conquered the industrial design realm, Karim recently turned his creative eye to architecture. We recently caught up with the designer cum architect to talk about the evolution of his career and the three eye-popping HAP condos he’s now got under construction for New York City. Hear what he has to say about his grand new endeavors—color, controversy and all.
- The Commercial Observer interviews Gary Barnett of Extell. The developer discusses everything from his aggressive development stance to the “poor door” controversy that’s gotten everyone all riled up. [CO]
- An epic tale of murder at 31 Bond Street—the site of new condos coming to the NoHo market. [NYT]
- The “Gossip Girl Penthouse” at 1136 Fifth Avenue sold for $35M, $5M above asking. [TRD]
- The Upper East Side is cooler than Brooklyn, according to an Upper East Side resident. [The Daily Beast]
- Related Companies is turning Carnegie Park at 200 East 94th Street into a condo building. The move is right in line with the trend of converting rentals into highly profitable luxury condos. [NYDN]
- Owners of the landmarked The Helmsley Building at 230 Park Avenue may place the office tower on the market for $1.5 billion. [Crain’s]
The Helmsley (left). Image via Monday Properties; Carnegie Park (right)
The city has just received 14 new design proposals for the two remaining housing developments on the southern edge of Brooklyn Bridge Park, a site that has been the focus of a contentious affordable housing debate; namely whether such units should be added to the coveted waterfront site. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Brooklyn Bridge Park Corp., which runs the park, will discuss the new proposals in a meeting today.
Mayor de Blasio called for all 59 New York City community boards to propose ways to increase the number of affordable housing units within their district, and CB4, which covers Chelsea, Clinton, and Hell’s Kitchen, is the first to respond. The Manhattan District Board 4 Affordable Housing Plan was voted on internally by the board on July 23, but is expected to be officially presented to the city on August 8th. The 81-page plan, which could influence affordable housing policy throughout the city, focuses on six major themes that will outline how the west side neighborhoods tackle the addition of 11,000 units of affordable housing.
There’s been lots of chatter on the street and in the media on the subject of “poor doors” in new developments for those who have qualified for affordable housing. And though this subject has created quite a bit of controversy, it’s actually not quite what it seems. Rather than being outraged that our city allows real estate developers to “discriminate” against those who could never consider paying for the privilege of residing in their latest and greatest luxury building, naysayers should think about reading up on exactly what affordable housing is and isn’t—“rich” home seekers having an edge over the so-called “poor.”