Actually our whole building, 100 apartments, is being evicted on 6 hours notice on the coldest night of the month. Huh! They told me I have to leave by midnight and that the Red Cross can help me.
The fire department inspected our building, 475 Kent Avenue, this afternoon, found no sprinklers, leaking standpipes, and explosion prone grain silos on the premises. Was there sketchiness? Was the eviction political? I don't know who initiated things downtown, but the guys on the ground, shutting down the building seemed to be responding to real things they were discovering on site.I could tell that the inspection wasn't going well: there were puddles
running down the stairwell after the standpipe failed the firemen's
leaktest. Later, around 3 PM I eavesdropped on the cell phone conversation from a Dept of Emergency (DoE) in the fifth floor of the stairwell. He was kind of torn on what to do, calling back to HQ: "...no, no, the cell reception is terrible here...so what... We might have to evacuate the tenants..."
I am off now to Borough Park to sleep on my buddy's couch, who is ultra generous and immediately offered to host me as soon as he guessed what was going on. I hope things work out. My worst fear is that we never get to return or that something destroys the building while we're away this week. I'm taking a photo album and my passport.
UPDATE: A good, coherent report is at The Gothamist. Comments not interesting.
A lively discussion is at The Brownstoner with better comments section (50 comments so far)
Lots of photos of 475 Kent lofts over at Flickr if you search "475Kent"
UPDATE: The New York Post noted that it was a "pricey" apartment building. They interviewed me while I was walking the dog. I immediately regretted speaking to the Post but they instead ran quotes from a sobbing young college student that they spoke to right after me so I was kind of relieved. The New York Post headline called it a "Matzo Bawl at Building":