Neighborhood Intel

Stuy Town residents have a new landlord, and two decades of guaranteed affordability

By Virginia K. Smith  | October 21, 2015 - 2:59PM

After years in limbo, Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village got a new owner this week—and with it, protections for nearly half of its rent-stabilized apartments. At a press conference yesterday, it was announced that the Blackstone Group is acquiring the middle-income rental complex for a cool $5.3 billion, as Bloomberg reported, and is partnering with the city to preserve a large chunk of its affordable apartments.

"The uncertainty and turmoil that this complex has endured since the financial crisis is definitively over," said Blackstone's head of global real estate Jonathan Gray, referring to Stuy-Town's now-infamous 2006 purchase by Tishman Speyer, which defaulted on the property in 2010.  

Of the complex's 11,000 rentals, Blackstone will keep 5,000 affordable for the next 20 years, Newsday reports, and 1,400 apartments that were set to convert to luxury rentals in 2020 will remain affordable for five additional years. All told, 90 percent of those 5,000 apartments will be reserved for households with annual incomes under $128,210, and 10 percent will be set aside for families with incomes under $62,150.

This was all made possible, in part, by a deal with the city to waive $77 million worth of mortgage recording taxes for the building, as well as a $144 million low-interest loan. (That, and presumably, the sky-high rents of the tenants who aren't stabilized in the building, and can pay market rates as high as $10,000 a month.)

Now, if only the city could strike up deals like this with every other apartment complex in the city ...


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