Target: Bill de Blasio, Mayor of New York City
Goal: Overturn decision to demolish five historically significant affordable housing buildings to make room for a new hotel.
Five buildings, deemed historically significant and used as affordable housing in New York’s East Village, are set to be demolished in an effort to make room for a new, trendsetting hotel. The buildings, nineteenth century tenements, will be replaced by Marriot hotel’s millennial-focused branch Moxy.
In 2008, the Landmark Preservation Commission (LPC) said that the buildings were eligible for classification as historic landmarks, though no official designation was ever made. After city authorities approved their destruction, the LPC then gave permission for the buildings’ demolition. David Lichtenstein, the developer who owns the property, is also a director of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Economic Development Corporation and a campaign donor, leading many residents to believe corruption may be involved in the controversial decision.
Residents of the buildings were given only about a month-and-half notice before being forced out of their homes. The construction of the new hotel takes away affordable means of housing for longtime residents, caters to visitors with indispensable incomes, and takes away from the unique fabric of the Village. Sign the petition to demand that city authorities reverse their decision.
Dear Mayor de Blasio,
One major facet of your mayoral campaign was affordable housing. However, in a recent decision approved by the city, dozens of units of affordable housing within historic East Village buildings will be demolished to make room for a trendy, millennial-focused hotel. More alarming is your relationship with the depaveloper behind the project, a campaign donor and director of your Economic Development Corporation, David Lichtenstein. This questionable relationship has caused many members of your community to wonder if corruption is the reason dozens of New York City residents are losing their homes for the construction of a hotel chain.
Demolishing buildings that make up the Village’s unique fabric for a modern hotel will destroy the very thing visitors long to see when they frequent the Village. In addition, longtime residents will lose their homes to young travelers who have indispensable incomes and who can afford to spend several nights at a luxury hotel. Men and women who once called New York home will no longer be able to afford housing due to this project.
I urge you to reverse the city’s decision to demolish these buildings. Not only will it save your political career from any unethical claims but it will protect both the unique atmosphere of the city and the citizens of the city.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Spencer Means