You'll recall, of course, that date last June when megadeveloper Extell flipped 17 East Village properties to a consortium of investors, including a large real estate company called Westbrook Partners. Given the track record of those involved, and the common pattern nowadays of predatory investors swooping in on rent-stabilized housing, we all knew the charges of tenant harassment were coming. And they have! The Villager reports that residents of many of these buildings are complaining about the denial of luxuries like hot water, threats from management and the warehousing of vacant apartments. The buck gets passed along many times, because the chain of command is a complicated maze of paperwork. Many tenants say the management firm running the buildings, PVE Associates, is scaring the crap out of them, and some paperwork (and one guy's Linked In page!) suggests that PVE is affiliated with Magnum Management, the company run by Ben Shaoul?Boy Emperor, YVES and A Building developer, slumlord, door-kicking madman and general Curbed folk hero. But many of the parties involved completely deny the connection between the companies.
City Room is now covering the harassment charges, and they write:
Frank Marino, a public-relations consultant hired by Westbrook Partners, said the managing partner of the Lower East Side landlord group is a company known as P.V.E. Associates, run by a man named Ben Shaoul. Reached by telephone on Wednesday, Mr. Shaoul said at first that he did not know about the property, then said he would call back after getting off a conference call. He has not responded to several messages since then.
Shaoul or no Shaoul, this is just another case on the growing list of rent-stabilized tenants charging their landlords with harassment. Which, as we all know, is hard to define.
· Making the case that Magnum is Westbrook’s manager [Villager]
· Lower East Side Advocates Complain of Tenant Harassment [City Room]
· Extell Throws in the Towel on East Village [Curbed]