They could be prime Chelsea apartments — and they’re going to waste.
A cluster of four city-owned Seventh Avenue properties that should be renting for millions...sits nearly empty, boarded up and falling apart.
The city has had more than three decades to fix up, raze or sell the five-story brick buildings on the southeast corner of 22nd Street but has left the 12 spacious residential units and three ground-floor storefronts to rot.
“This intersection is the black hole of Chelsea,” fumed Pamela Wolff of the Chelsea West 200 Block Association. “It’s just criminal that this condition could go on for decades, worsening every day.”
Wolff and other neighborhood advocates want the buildings knocked down to make room for a high-rise with affordable units.
One-bedroom apartments near the derelict corner go for $3,000 to $4,000 a month, and one-bedroom condos can top $1 million.
Currently, only a bodega and two families remain in the plywood-covered eyesores. The holdout renters, in 201 and 205 Seventh Ave., pay only hundreds in monthly rent through an affordable-housing program.
They’re waiting for the city to deliver on its promises to do gut renovations, especially at bricked-over 203 and 207 Seventh Ave.
“This could be a beautiful building in Chelsea, and [the city has] been putting us on hold for years,” said longtime resident Israel Rodriguez, 54, who lives at 201 Seventh Ave. with his wife and son. “This is long overdue.”
Rodriguez’s family and other tenants rallied to save their homes after the city seized the buildings through tax foreclosure in 1976.
Shortly after, they entered the Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s Tenant Interim Lease Program — which allows residents to manage and eventually buy their buildings following major rehabilitations.
But the Seventh Avenue structures remained under city ownership, even decades later.It's a damn example of government cesspool caused distortions, surrounded by private sector efficiencies. The Tenderloin district of San Francisco is much worse. The land is multi-million dollar land that private operators would build up aggressively, if it wasn't for the People's Republic of San Francisco rulers, who refuse to allow development of the district. So this exists instead:
Instead, the city removed tenants one by one after 203 and 207 Seventh Ave. were “deemed hazardous due to poor structural integrity,” said an HPD spokeswoman.
She said the city plans to renovate all four buildings and is looking for qualified sponsors for the project. But there’s still no schedule to begin any rehabilitation.