Illegal Conversion Legislation Considered [UPDATE: City Council Passes Bill]

UPDATE: On May 10, 2017, the City Council voted 49-0 approve the new legislation. The new law, sponsored by Council Members Vincent Gentile and Jumaane Williams, increases the minimum civil penalty for immediate hazardous illegal conversions to $15,000 fine for each dwelling unit beyond the number that are legally authorized. The legislation was proposed after a two-alarm fire in an illegally converted unit in East Flatbush, Brooklyn killed one person, injured five more, and … <Read More>

Staten Island Building Owner Fined $71,900 for Illegal Conversion

Owner converted a two-family house to a four-family. On May 27, 2009, the Department of Buildings issued four notices of violation to Nashat Estafanous. Estafanous owned a residential property at 25 Simonson Avenue in Staten Island, which he converted, without permits, from a two-family residence to a four-family residence by fitting the attic and newly-constructed garage for occupancy. The NOVs imposed a fine totaling $31,100, and ordered Estafanous to remove the illegal conversion construction … <Read More>

New Bill by Council Member Gentile Takes Aim at Illegal Home Conversions

Proposal imposes steep fines on bad actors, and helps Buildings inspectors gain premises access. On June 21, 2016, New York City Council Members Vincent J. Gentile, Jumaane D. Williams, and Barry S. Grodenchik introduced legislation that would impose high penalties on bad actor landlords and equip the Department of Buildings with means to gain entry into suspected illegal conversion sites. This bill was developed with the support of Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, after a … <Read More>

City Council, Borough President Push Against Illegal Home Conversions

The new legislation was announced in the wake of fire fatalities.  On March 8, 2015 Councilmember Jumaane D. Williams held a press conference to announce new legislation to stop illegal home conversions in New York City.  The legislation is co-sponsored by Councilmember Vincent Gentile, who has previously introduced two other bills to halt illegal conversions, and is introduced at the request of Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.  An illegal home conversion occurs when … <Read More>

Council Member Works to Combat Illegal Home Conversions

Pending legislation would make it easier to impose civil penalties for illegal conversions. In recent months, City Council Member Vincent Gentile has introduced two bills to address the issue of illegal home conversions in New York City. According to Ann Falutico, Zoning Committee Chair for Brooklyn Community Board 10, a study of 311 statistics show that since 2010, over 1,000 complaints for illegal home conversions came from communities within the Council Member’s district, Bay … <Read More>

Conversion of illegal Midtown apartments approved

1182 Broadway. Image: CityLand.

Sixteen-story building was illegally converted to residential use in 1997. On January 26, 2011, the City Planning Commission approved Mocal Enterprises Inc.’s proposal to convert its sixteen-story commercial building at 1182 Broadway in Manhattan to partial residential use. The building, zoned for manufacturing and commercial uses, is located within the Madison Square North Historic District.

In 1997, Mocal illegally converted the portion of the building above the fifth floor into … <Read More>