It was big news around town recently when Met Life sold Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village in the biggest residential real estate deal to date in this country (something on the order of a few billion dollars). These two apartment complexes sit on Manhattan’s East Side, and they were developed on land aquired through eminent domain and given to Met Life for the purpose of providing housing to soldiers returning from World War II.
On the one hand, it seems they’ve served their purpose, and the real estate eventually should feel the tug of market forces. (Why should retired people pay 1/2 market rent in Stuyvesant and own a second home in Florida, while young people struggling to make it in the city pay much more for a smaller apartment?) On the other hand, I see some legitimacy to the protection of poor folks and those on fixed incomes, which is provided by rent stabilization. It’s a complex social and economic issue.
My favorite part of the issue, however, is this photograph which appeared in “AM New York: Manhattan’s Largest Circulation”. The paper is popular only because they hand it out free at subway stations, not because of the thoughtfulness or scope of its writing, and certainly not because of its journalistic integrity.
Need I explain the humor in this picture? Clearly they wanted a shot of a Stuy resident, but why only half his face? And this is no passerby. He is Samuel Lichtenberg, 80, a long-time resident. Thanks for the smile, AM New York!