Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Taxpayer money for nothing and TVs for free

From the NY Times:

For all the booms and busts he has lived through, Vincent Riso never thought it would come to this: Offering free 42-inch, flat-screen televisions to lure buyers into government-subsidized homes.

Units at Waters Edge, city-subsidized condominiums in Far Rockaway, Queens, have sold much more slowly than expected.

Historically, such homes have sold quickly. But not at Waters Edge at Arverne, a stretch of 130 town house condominiums Mr. Riso’s company, the Briarwood Organization, built between Far Rockaway’s boardwalk and the A train’s rust-streaked overpass in Queens.

So last spring, Briarwood, which got $12.8 million in city and state subsidies for Waters Edge, began throwing in as much as seven months’ free maintenance on some units, along with the TV. Still, as of mid-February, roughly three years after the units began arriving on the market, 22 of them had yet to sell.

The city has received accolades nationwide for its efforts to provide housing affordable to middle- and lower-income households. Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has pledged to build, save or restore 165,000 such housing units by 2014. But while the city is still filling up low-income rentals, the housing program is struggling on the ownership front.

Sales are sluggish at some projects, particularly ones in poorer neighborhoods aimed at middle-income buyers. Few units will be built any time soon: since July 2008, the city has made only two deals with developers for new home ownership projects, down from two dozen deals in the 12 months before that.


NYC Educator said...

It's very thoughtful of the Mayor to provide low-cost housing in crappy neighborhoods or by the train tracks. Perhaps he should set an example by moving into one of those units.

Imagine the thrill of neighborhood residents when the two SUVs showed up to drive him to the subway he takes to work each day, to show us what a regular guy he is.

They could shout, "Thank you, Mayor Bloomberg, for closing our schools and giving them to Eva Moskowitz," and he could pretend he gave a damn one way or the other.

Kevin Walsh said...

Waters Edge, and any project at Rockaway Beach, has a little problem: the presence of the Edgemere Houses and the Far Rockaway neighborhood to the east. Drugs, guns, and criminals.

Georges said...

These are in the middle of nowhere - bucolic if you like the aura of projects behind you the ocean in front of you and your stuck in the middle!

How do you get to work from here 2 hours on trains buses and cars. This should have been NYS casino area on the ocean - our City / State is screwed up.

Anonymous said...

When you build stuff in neighborhoods with a very low income / government assistance population, you couldn't sell something no matter what. They have no money! And people with a family (and a job)will not move to far rockaway and establish equity there.

Anonymous said...

Only in New York can prime beachfront or beach-close property become a blighted nabe'.

The decline of eastern Rockaway took decades to manifest itself, though gov't policy (i.e. Robert Moses' placement of public housing there) certainly helped speed the slide. To think that just building a few tracts of new housing there(and hype a glitzy marketing campaign)can reverse this process is just plain arrogant.

I do not completely agree, however, that nabes east of Rockaway Park cannot become bedroom communities on the basis of proximity to jobs alone (socioeconomic issues aside.) The residents of Breezy and Belle Harbor manage seem to manage well enough with their commutes.

Anonymous said...

The area should have remained seasonal. It is dangerous, difficult to evacuate, suffers extremes of temperature in the winter, flooding, hurricane threats etc.

Working people cannot access their jobs. If you are on welfare, you will stay on welfare since you cannot work in Manhattan or most of Queens or Brooklyn and live there.

Anony2 said...

The proximity to the water makes these very difficult and very expensive to insure. No insurance = no mortgage.

Anonymous said...

The city should either use these new houses for shelter people, or they should knock them down and build casinos. The casino idea would be a boon for New York and locals wouldn't have to travel to Atlantic City. The state would have much needed revenue and wouldn't have to raise our taxes. The Rockaways are close to local airports and has a boardwalk and beach. Casinos would attract people from Connecticut, Long Island and New York. Bloomberg continues to invest well and build his personal fortune. If he could only do the same for New York City. The casino idea is a good one. Even Mike's developer friends would win.

Anonymous said...

congressional real estate loan gambling and investment bank gambling, got the U.S. into this financial mess.

it does not make sense to develop casino's for more gambling. the only citizens who have income are the municipal union employees. when their jobs go because the private sector can no longer pay their salaries and pensions,through tax revenues. then meltdown.

check out the country of Greece. nys can not pay tax refunds as it is ?

tea party show down in Searchlight Nevada,Mar.27,2010

Lino said...

For the old man "Anon"

tea party reality:

BTW: Did you know that Fux "news" -has a new financial savior?

Yep, an a-rab who gives $25K to families of suicide bombers.

What a misled jerk you are.