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Airbnb listing at Chelsea NYCHA complex spurs Council hearings

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Plus, the Veterans Day parade is today—and more intel in today’s New York Minute news roundup

Several large buildings in a public housing complex. Shutterstock

Good morning, and welcome to New York Minute, a new roundup of the New York City news you need to know about today. Send stories you think should be included to tips@curbed.com.

A $90 Airbnb listing in a NYCHA building

You know the old cliche: If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Such was the case for one Boston tourist, who rented an apartment in Chelsea on Airbnb, only to find that it was located in the Fulton Houses, a NYCHA complex on West 19th Street.

According to the New York Times, the apartment had a nearly five-star rating, and talked up nearby neighborhood amenities like Chelsea Market and the High Line. But in addition to violating the city’s rules on short-term rentals (which are illegal for stays of 30 days or less unless a resident of the home is also present), the listing may have violated federal housing rules, which don’t allow subletting of Section 8 or rent-controlled subsidized housing.

In response to news stories about the possibly illegal listing, City Council member Ritchie Torres tweeted that he will look into holding hearings to determine “the extent of Airbnb penetration into NYCHA.” But a spokesperson for the beleaguered public housing authority told the Times that “it’s not a widespread issue.”

And in other news…

  • The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree—this year’s is a Norway spruce from a town close to the Catskills—has officially arrived in Midtown.
  • As former Mayor Michael Bloomberg flirts with the idea of a presidential run, the Times took a look at his legacy after three terms as mayor—one in which much of the city was transformed, but also “a story about inequality.”
  • The city has taken away 6,100 of its reported 3 million parking spots since January 2018, which have been repurposed for things like truck loading zones, bike lanes, and Citi Bike docks. (The horror!)
  • Scaffolding collapsed at the work site for 50 Hudson Yards on Monday morning, injuring four.
  • NYCHA is finally allowed to use $450 million that has been earmarked for new boilers across its various buildings, but those may not be installed for at least another four years.
  • And finally, today is Veterans Day, and the annual parade commemorating the day will march up Fifth Avenue beginning at 10 a.m. Here are the street closures you’ll need to know about.