Fundraiser at 135 Plymouth to Save Loft Apartments

The residents of 135 Plymouth Street, virtually the only remaining live/work loft building in Dumbo, are holding a fundraiser to save their rental units. The residents are in a loft law lawsuit with the building’s landlord, who residents say wants to evict tenants to create luxury apartments. This New York Times article gives some background on the residents’ desire to apply for protection under the loft law, while the landlord wants to legalize the building for residential use under the Department of Buildings. As the building residents state on their website, “We are presently trying to claim the rights that the Loft Law grants us, but risk losing our homes for want of funds to pay the team of legal, architectural, fire and engineering experts that it takes to prevail in court.” The fundraiser, which will have food, drink and performances in two of the building’s loft apartments, is scheduled for Saturday, June 8. Twenty of the building residents are contributing to the menu, as well as entertainment such as screen printing, caricatures, mural painting, bands, magicians, DJs, and an aerial show. To purchase tickets to the event or to make a donation, go here.

14 Comment

  • So many worthwhile charities out there helping needy people. Your money is better spent elsewhere than helping the self entitled artist crowd. Maybe this guy could sell some of the artwork in his space if anyone wants it.

  • i was going to donate to doctors without borders but keeping you in your undermarket loft seems way more worth it

  • Caricatures, screen printing, and magicians? Sounds like a kid’s birthday party with boxed wines and tahini dip. Maybe Fran Lebowitz will be there, smoking in a corner, and complaining about how NYC hasn’t been fun since the 70’s. For better or for worse, NYC hasn’t been an affordable haven for artists for years. It’s all free market, baby. Either you become Julian Schnabel or you move to a cheaper part of the country to do your art. The writing is on the wall, but if you want to buy a ticket to the party, knock yourself out. You can walk away with a framable character drawing of your worst feature, a buzz, maybe take someone home.

  • Save 135 Plymouth St. I’ve posted about this building on Brownstoner about 5 years back and I mentioned it as one of the last buildings in Dumbo that still houses real artists – these days DUMBO more closely resembles Murray Hill, and this literally is the last artist building. I know numerous people mentioned in this article, I’ve DJ’d parties there since the late 90’s, and spent a lot of time over the years. Most people on this site don’t realize it, but the some of the people mentioned in this article from this building created some of the largest underground music and arts-related events in Brooklyn over the last 15 years (Complacent, The Danger, Dumboluna, Winkel & Baltick events), and singlehandedly drove tens of thousands of people to ‘discover DUMBO’ and Brooklyn via their underground events in the late 90’s / early 2000’s. Look at DUMBO is at today. These artists paved the way for ‘creative professionals’ to live here which paved the way for the Wall Streeters to move here today.

    They have significantly and indirectly helped create hundreds of millions of dollars of value for Real Estate owners in Dumbo (Walentas and the JW’s mostly). I personally believe these people should be entitled to share a piece of that success that Dumbo has seen, and at a minimum be granted Loft Law rights and not be kicked out of their home they’ve lived in for 10+ years.

    You guys can make fun of their fundraiser all you want, but if you do actually care about some of the true creators of the current thriving Brooklyn arts scene not getting booted out of their homes to make way for more money for landowners and Wall Streeters to take the last remaining space in DUMBO, you may think otherwise.

    Long live 135 Plymouth St.

    • There are plenty of artists in the city. My wife is one. We’ve always paid our own bills and market rent. Sometimes we had to move because between my salary and hers we couldn’t afford exactly where we wanted to live. Just a fact of life. These folks aren’t special. It sounds like they had a good run but things change.

    • I agree with eh… Do you have any idea how many people lived in AIR and Live/Work loft buildings (myself included) in Hells Kitchen, Harlem, Williamsburg in the 80s and 90s only to be forced out by development and progress? Those are the breaks…that how it goes. I am a grown woman in my 40s sharing with a roommate and that’s what you have to do sometimes. Since 1988 I have lived in Hoboken (when practically no one did), Jersey City (again…ghost town), Hells Kitchen, Alphabet City, North and South Williamsburg…you name it. You live where you can afford and sometimes you have to move on. If being an “artist” isn’t lucrative maybe a career change is in order. Also, please don’t assume all New Yorkers care about art or what people consider art anyway. I for one do not.

    • i can armpit fart “amazing grace”…now pay my rent

    • Its not 1990’s anymore. Partay is over.. many of us were forced out of SoHo when it was an artist have. Time’s up.

    • Hey, i dont know if you use your account anymore, but i was wondering if you had any photos of what this building, or other artist’s loft building in DUMBO, looked like back in the 90s? Doing some research and can’t seem to find any. Thanks!

  • It’s sad, but this is the way of things, or at least one of the more typical patterns of gentrification.

    Soho, Williamsburg, Dumbo, Gowanus. Lather, rinse, repeat.

    I hear Philly is affordable. Or mayhaps Baltimore?

  • I happen to know that original tenants were marking up rent to subletters by 75-100% Where did all those profits go? Good luck getting what you need but I think it’s pretty ballsy to hold a ‘fundraiser’ like you’re some charity case.

  • According to the Times article, they were offered and rejected 10 year leases…nobody gets 10 year leases, that’s unheard of. Why should I pay my market rent and then pay $100 to attend a fundraiser so they don’t have to pay theirs? Entitled pricks should get a real job like the rest of us or live within their means. Also, deserves mention that the landlord hasn’t actually threatened
    to evict anyone…