Embattled Residents of 11 Allen Continue the Fight

Posted on: October 17th, 2012 at 6:18 am by
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Fei Wang purchased the tenement building at 11 Allen Street in early 2011, and has since fought tooth-and-nail to evict its longtime tenants. It’s the same old story – kick out the rent regulated in favor of luxurification. Only these Lower East Siders aren’t going anywhere, despite the ongoing eviction case.

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Residents protesting; Photo: Open City Mag

The embattled residents, most of whom are Chinese and Malaysian immigrants, consider themselves protected under current housing laws, and refused to abide by the 10-day vacate order last year. After all, they claim that the landlord operated in bad faith, having refused to maintain the building in accordance with “basic habitability standards.” Wang proceeded with the “holdover” (eviction) proceedings in housing court, with the argument that the building is zoned commercial, leaving no rent-stabilization protections for tenants.

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Attorney Shafaq Islam with Residents; Photo: Open City Mag

So 11 Allen lawyered up, and are represented by housing attorney Shafaq Islam and the Urban Justice Center.

Back in August, a photo essay was published on the matter. Two months later, their plight has gone even more public with the addition of banners to the facade of 11 Allen. The bilingual signs implore the neighborhood to support the cause.

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