The building does not have a residential certificate of occupancy, but that is not the immediate problem. The immediate problem is the broken sprinkler system, city officials said. The repair and partial installation, the city said, could take three months. So residents resolved to hasten the process. Twenty people updated plans for each 12,500-square-foot floor. An architect from the sixth floor, Bart Javier, digitally compiled the data to send to the landlords’ engineer, for review for the city, a crucial step in getting the sprinkler in.
After Evacuation, Artists Begin an Effort to Save Their Brooklyn Haven
The hope was that the city would allow residents back in as the system was repaired. After all, the building’s floors were concrete and fireproof, and the standpipes worked again. Local politicians urged the city to bend.
“We’re sorry you were victimized,” Deputy Assistant Chief Edward Kilduff, the Brooklyn borough commander with the Fire Department, told residents at last week’s meeting. “But in an age of accountability, we’re not taking any chances.”
Mr. Brach, one of the landlords, was devastated by the crackdown, tenants said. He is also losing money. By New York standards, rents at 475 Kent are reasonable but not cheap, ranging from $1,000 to roughly $4,000.
“It was a pure loss for him in every way, a sheer disaster,” said Xan Price, a filmmaker who lived on the seventh floor. “He was sitting with his head in his hands, sobbing.”
Excuse me while I wipe the tear from my eye after reading about the financial straits of the greedy landlord who illegally converted his industrial building into housing, failed to maintain it, put hundreds of people's lives in danger and is responsible for their current state of homelessness.
Photo from NY Times