A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from August 19, 2013
Poor Door

New York City grants tax breaks to developers who set aside a certain portion of their buildings for affordable housing. An Extell building at 40 Riverside Boulevard, between 61st and 62nd streets, on the Upper West Side of Manhattan was designed with separate entrances for regular housing and affordable housing—dubbed the “rich door” and the “poor door.”

“A door for the poor, or as we call it, a ‘Poor Door’” was cited on the blog West Side Rag on August 12, 2013.


West Side Rag
NEW UWS DEVELOPMENT COULD HAVE SEPARATE ENTRANCE FOR POORER PEOPLE
Posted on August 12, 2013 at 2:30 pm by West Sider
(...)
A 33-story building slated to be built on Riverside Boulevard between 61st and 62nd street will have an entirely separate entrance for people of lower socioeconomic means: a door for the poor, or as we call it, a “Poor Door.” The affordable homes will be oriented towards the back of the building, while market-rate units will have a view of the Hudson.

“This ‘separate but equal’ arrangement is abominable and has no place in the 21st century, let alone on the Upper West Side,” Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal told us. “A mandatory affordable housing plan is not license to segregate lower-income tenants from those who are well-off. The developer must follow the spirit as well the letter of the law when building affordable housing, and this plan is clearly not what was intended by the community.”

Of course, New York real estate is filled with “poor doors” and “rich doors.”
(....)
COMMENTS
Scooter Stan says:
August 13, 2013 at 11:00 am
But it NEED NOT BE CALLED THE “POOR DOOR” (which, of course, will quickly become the “Po’ Do’”

New York (NY) Post
Upper West Side condo has separate entrances for rich and poor
By KATE BRIQUELET
Last Updated: 12:20 PM, August 18, 2013
Posted:  1:27 AM, August 18, 2013
(A “rich door” and a “poor door” are illustrated.—ed.)
This is rich!

The poor will use a separate door under plans for a new Upper West Side luxury tower — where affordable housing will be segregated from ritzy waterfront condos despite being in the same building.

Manhattan developer Extell is seeking millions in air rights and tax breaks for building 55 low-income units at 40 Riverside Boulevard, but the company is sequestering the cash-poor tenants who make the lucrative incentives possible.

Five floors of affordable housing will face away from the Hudson River and have a separate entrance, elevator and maintenance company, while 219 market-rate condominiums will overlook the waterfront.

The Huffington Post
40 Riverside Boulevard Condo Plan For NYC Has Separate Entrances For Rich And Poor (VIDEO)
Posted: 08/19/2013 2:57 pm EDT | Updated: 08/19/2013 2:57 pm EDT
A New York City real estate developer is under fire for a condominium building plan that would see two separate entrances for residents: one for the low-income tenants, and another for the well-to-dos residing in the tower’s luxury pads.

The New York Post reports developer Extell is hoping that by building 55 affordable housing units at 40 Riverside Boulevard on the Upper West Side, the residential building will be able to secure millions in tax breaks and air rights.

Business Insider
In Defense Of The ‘Poor Door’: Why It’s Fine For A Luxury Condo Developer To Keep Its Low-Income Units Separate
Josh Barro Aug. 19, 2013, 4:22 PM
(...)
We require and incent developers who build market-rate housing to also sell or rent some units in the same developments at cut-rate prices. The idea is that affordable housing shouldn’t just be affordable and livable; it should be substantially similar in location and character to new luxury housing. If rich people are getting brand new apartments overlooking the Hudson River, so should some lucky winners of affordable housing lotteries.

Hence the outrage over the “poor door” at a planned luxury condo project that Extell will build on Manhattan’s Upper West Side: market-rate buyers will use one entrance, while tenants in the project’s affordable housing component will use another. Affordable apartments will also be on low floors and, unlike many of the market-rate units, they won’t face the Hudson River.

Getting mad about the “poor door” is absurd. The only real outrage is that Extell had to build affordable units at all.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityBuildings/Housing/Parks • Monday, August 19, 2013 • Permalink