Today in Illegally Converted Loft-Space Raids

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07/22/2010 10:45 AM |

The Brooklyn Paper has this photograph of an Authentic Brooklyn Artist moving out of his soon-to-be-shut-down loft.
  • The Brooklyn Paper has this photograph of an Authentic Brooklyn Artist moving out of his soon-to-be-shut-down loft.

City inspectors raided? visited? two artists’ spaces in Williamsburg yesterday—573 Metropolitan Avenue, reported as a workspace for Bushwick’s 3rd Ward, and 151 Kent Avenue, an artist loft—after complaints of illegally converted space, local reporter Aaron Short, writing for the Post, reports. Last month’s passage of the Loft Law grants protections to residential tenants in industrial-zoned buildings, but requires buildings to be up to code—573 Metropolitan’s owner will be required to fix its fire escape, it appears.

Meanwhile, the city has also issued an eviction notice to Rubulad, occupants of building at Flushing Avenue near the BQE (Clinton Hill? South Williamsburg? Bed-Stuy?), where the arts-collective-that-also-throws-killer-parties has, seemingly, picked up enough noise complaints to negate the gentlemen’s agreement that often allows cool things to go on in otherwise vacant industrial buildings.

Hey, listen—I work at a desk and report things secondhand, so if I’m missing anything important, email or something.

One Comment

  • Chris and Sari from Rubulad here with clarification.

    On the morning of Tuesday, July 20th, NYC fire marshals entered Rubulad and announced we were being “evicted.” We were informed that representatives of the Department of Buildings were on their way to padlock the space and that we had an hour to remove our essential belongings.

    There appears to be some element of harassment at work here as, at the close of business on the third day of this ongoing fiasco, the DOB has not arrived to padlock the premises and indeed we have spoken with them on the phone and they have assured us they have no intention of doing so.

    However, the fire department has issued an “Order to Vacate” disallowing us from entering the ground floor of our space. The DOB represents that they can and will undo the Order, but again nothing further has happened and as of now the Order stands.

    Meanwhile, our space is in total disarray as many sympathetic friends and arts groups heard our cry of distress and came to help move our belongings and supplies into storage lockers in (retrospectively unwarranted) anticipation of being padlocked.

    It’s unclear to us how much of this harassment is due to a) the furor over the new loft laws, b) the fact that the fire department finds our parties annoying or c) any actual or imagined safety issues.

    What is clear is that while we have been ordered to vacate the ground floor, we have not been evicted in the sense of being irrevocably thrown out on the street.