“New UWS Development Could Have Separate Entrance For Poor People”

Laws – however good their intentions – can’t actually create equality where equality doesn’t really exist.

A 33-story building slated to be built on Riverside Boulevard between 61st and 62nd street will have an entirely separate entrance for people of lower socioeconomic means: a door for the poor, or as we call it, a “Poor Door.” The affordable homes will be oriented towards the back of the building, while market-rate units will have a view of the Hudson.

“This ‘separate but equal’ arrangement is abominable and has no place in the 21st century, let alone on the Upper West Side,” Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal told us. “A mandatory affordable housing plan is not license to segregate lower-income tenants from those who are well-off. The developer must follow the spirit as well the letter of the law when building affordable housing, and this plan is clearly not what was intended by the community.”

Of course, New York real estate is filled with “poor doors” and “rich doors.” Buildings that are just across the street from each other often house people with vastly different incomes. But developments like this stand out because the developer will earn credits by building it that are likely worth tens of millions of dollars. By building affordable housing, a developer gets to add more floor area to a development beyond what the zoning code would normally allow.

via West Side Rag