Over in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, a group of protestors led by the Alliance for Tenant Power recently staged a rally against 626 Flatbush Avenue, a luxury high-rise currently taking shape near Prospect Park. The event was held in part to protest the ever-controversial 421-a tax abatement program, which developer Hudson Companies falls under.
According to Gothamist, around 75 protestors showed up at the site on Thursday, where speakers included local politicians Diana Richardson and Shirley Patterson, who are both running for the open Assembly seat whose district includes Prospect-Lefferts.
Chief among protestors' complaints is that only 51 of 254 units were deemed "affordable," dubious considering the fact that studio apartments will cost almost $1,900/month. Diana Richardson also took umbrage with the fact that construction workers on the building are not unionized, and the fact that the Area Median Income used to determine low-income rent in 421-a reflects the city-at-large, and not Prospect-Lefferts, which is significantly less.
"[626 Flatbush] is going to be a luxury development in the middle of a neighborhood that is working class," said Delsenia Glover, who leads the Alliance for Tenant Power. "And folks are afraid of escalating rents and displacement. We believe that 421a leads to gentrification, and is a program that's outlived its usefulness."
Glover argued that the estimated $1.1 billion in tax revenue lost due to 421a could instead go to fund Section 8 housing and subsidy vouchers for thousands of New Yorkers.
· Protesters Rally Against $1,850/Month Studios In Prospect-Lefferts Gardens [Gothamist]
· All 626 Flatbush Avenue coverage [Curbed]
· All 421-a coverage [Curbed]