Home Second Avenue Subway MTA celebrates leasing their very first Second Ave. apartment

MTA celebrates leasing their very first Second Ave. apartment

by Benjamin Kabak

Okay, okay. It’s not the first apartment the MTA has ever leased, but for the Second Ave. Subway, the lease the MTA recently signed on a rent-controlled apartment on 69th St. is good omen.

So here’s the story. As part of the construction of the Second Ave. Subway, the MTA has to demolish four apartment buildings on the Upper East Side. At the same time, the Authority must provide replacement housing for everyone they displace. The catch – of course, there’s a catch – is rent control. Most of these Upper East Side apartments are rent-controlled. Good luck finding adequate replacements in the area.

So as the neighbors have begun to worry, the MTA has, in the words of Metro reporter Michael Rundle, “just warehousing empty properties as they come on the market.” It’s a brilliant strategy: Snap up empty apartments in the soon-to-be-condemned as they come on the market because that’s one fewer family that needs to be relocated. Rundle has more:

In preparation for its Second Avenue Subway project, the transit agency successfully leased its first rent-controlled apartment on the Upper East Side..

Last month the authority had some luck. It leased a one-bedroom at 1313 Second Ave., near 69th Street, part of a building that will be demolished for the new 72nd Street station. The lease is one year, and the rent is around $1,200 a month.

I want a one-bedroom in a primo location for $1,200. I wonder which sketchy real estate agent the MTA is using and how much the finder’s fee ran them.

Anyway, that’s the story. Landlords are loathe to rent to the MTA because this is, after all, the fourth time they’ve tried to build the Second Ave. Subway. But, hey, one rent-controlled apartment is now in their portfolio. It’s a start.

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1 comment

Dave Rosenstein October 4, 2007 - 2:04 pm

Just a minor editorial correction. There are no more “rent-controlled” apartments available for rent, though there are still some that have been occupied since 1972, when rent control (a WWII measure) was essentially ended. After 1972, apartments would lose that status when they are vacated (“vacancy decontrol”).

The proper term your reporter uses should be either “rent-regulated” (more general) or “rent-stabilized,” the actual type of regulated apartments still available for rent in NYC.

The next tier is “market rate” or basically, unregulated apartments, where there is not even a certainty of getting a new lease and no controls at all on how much of an increase that new lease might contain.



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