As news of what could be the biggest real estate deal in history spread, residents of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village - and the rest of New York City - wondered what this could mean for the real estate market. Though selling the 110 building complex and changing over ownership of all the units would probably take years, questions about what Mayor Bloomberg will do about the city's housing policy arose, as well as what this will mean for the middle class residents who live there as a large swath of housing is taken away. The Tenants Political Action Committee tells the NY Sun, "This sale is the perfect illustration of the hole in the bottom of the bucket of the Bloomberg housing plan. The plan deals only with production. They will never build as much as we're losing."
And,sure, rent stabilized tenants wouldn't be affected at first, and if the buildings are converted to condos, tenants could have the option of buying (and many may be eager to do, as the Daily News found out), but many agree the character of the neighborhood would change drastically.
Our readers pointed out some interesting issues about potentially buying one of the new apartments (if offered) and whether people have a right to live in Manahttan. And NY Post's Steve Cuozzo has a column saying the deal will never happen - and if it does, it might be for $1 billion less than the desired $5 billion (clarified from earlier - sorry for mixing that up!). Cuozzo writes:
To a guy who lived in Stuyvesant Town for three years in the late 1970s, it's a wonder the place has become the It Girl of residential offerings.
Back then, Stuy Town had all the glamour of the projects, with more greenery and slightly better service. It's improved today, but MetLife's "luxury" moniker is a joke.
...Yes, the windows have been modernized and air-conditioning has finally come to Stuy Town. There's better landscaping and new finishes.
But it's unclear how much tenants will pay for non-doorman buildings still reliant on security buzzers.
Stuy Town's two-bedroom apartments have only a single bathroom. The walls of my place were so paper-thin, I got to know everything about my neighbors' family feuds and sex lives.
Much of the complex lies far east of bus and subway stops and stores.
An executive of one company among the prospective bidders said that "in a normal market," those weaknesses could seriously lower the price - "but we're not in a normal market."
It will be fascinating to see just how abnormal things get.
At this point, nothing is out of the question.
Photograph of family and a pigeon in Stuyvesant Town by Mary Altaffer/AP