Breaking: Vacate Orders Issued at Steve Croman’s 159 Stanton Street
Embattled tenants of Steve Croman’s 159 Stanton Street face another immediate danger today. Department of Buildings inspectors showed up this morning and issued vacate orders on two of the unit, reportedly displacing tenants. Nothing is filed on the city database yet.
The directives are likely related to the perilous conditions created while upscaling this tenement. (More on that below.)
Red Cross is currently onsite assisting. More as it develops.
Meanwhile, you’ll recall that the Tenants Association here filed suit back in December to force an end to “repair” work and alleged harassment. Indeed, under Croman’s ownership, the laundry list of horrors is seemingly never-ending. Purported living conditions included ceiling collapses, rat and mold infestation, and cascading water flooding halls through a dilapidated roof and skylight.
It’s collectively called “construction as harassment,” a textbook tactic employed by slumlords to force out tenants through hazardous living in order to make room for higher paying renters. And in doing so, allegedly failed to comply with the Tenant Protection Plan. The 159 Stanton Street Tenants Association’s lawsuit calls for an end to Croman’s harassment, for necessary repairs, and the use of safe work practices in all work that is being done in the building.
“Those of us in apartments adjacent to where they are working are experiencing plaster falling and dishes shaking and the entire apartment shaking,” one embattled resident tells us. “I worry my ceiling will collapse and I do not feel safe sleeping here.”
Also: “we learned that joists supporting the third floor are sagging significantly and one is actually braced. It’s madness.”
Below are the pertinents from last week’s hearing. Timing of this vacate order is tragic given the orders from the hearing. Croman’s cronies and the tenant association are back in housing court on April 4.
- Croman must install fireproofing materials immediately. The court-ordered completion date for the job is April 4. There will be a 24/7 fireguard in place until they finish that work. All other work can not be done (due to Stop Work Orders) until they get permits, etc.
- There are some very serious structural issues that must be addressed, purportedly including sagging ceilings, falling debris, and shaking. Tenants are obviously concerned about the safety.
- Court ordered that they conducted any/all work in a safe, legal, workmanlike manner.
Meanwhile, Steve Croman awaits sentencing on twenty felony counts, and faces 25 years behind bars.