Wednesday, August 20, 2014

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Chinatown Residents Claim They Lost Homes Due To Owner Neglect

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Some Chinatown residents said they were kicked out of their homes to make way for a new hotel.

Asian Americans for Equality said eight families lost their homes in a building on Hester Street due to the intentional neglect by the building's owner.

After purchasing the building in 2007, the owner allegedly did little to correct any problems and then later reported his building’s violations to the the city in order to expedite demolition.

The Department of Buildings noted that deterioration of the building was due in part to the construction of an 18-story Wyndham Hotel on an adjacent property owned by the same man.

"There are a lot of landlords in this city who want to buy property with the expectation that they can break the law and get rid of the low-income rent-paying tenants and make as big a profit as they can," said Benjamin Dulchin of the Association of Neighborhood and Housing Development.

"We cannot let landlords to continue to accidentally or not accidentally destroy people's homes and then benefit from building on those properties," said Susan Stetzer of Community Board 3.

The New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal has ordered the owner, William Su, to pay relocation fees for the tenants but he allegedly has refused to comply.

NY1 was unable to reach Su for comment.

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