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Tactics & Technology

East Village, PS64/CHARAS


605 9TH STREET / 350 10TH STREET

• Building Class W1 • 2022 DEBT (P3) $309,304.82
Property Value $6.2M • Landmark •
• 205 Complaints • 79 Open Violations •
• 5 Stories • Built 1906 • Zipcode 10009 •

State Assembly 74 (Harvey Epstein)
State Senate 27 (Brad Hoylman)
Council District 2 (Carlina Rivera)
Manhattan Community District 3
BBL ​​1003920010 Borough 1Block 00392Lot 0010


Built 1905-1906, construction of a building had led to the establishment of a Class W1 facility, named Public School 64. Located in East Village of Manhattan, this gigantic and wondrous of a building is located at two addresses, forming a connection between blocks, 350 East 10th street and 605 East 9th Street. It stands 5 stories high between Avenue B and Avenue C, in the Manhattan Community District 3, and is in the reach of State Assembly 74, State Senate 27, and Council District 2. 

In the 1960s, the city rented out the Christodora building (located next door to PS64) to the Black Panthers, Young Lords, and other community groups to utilize. Of course, researching first-hand documents on the operations that occurred during this time is difficult, and so rumors of why the building had been shut down remains to be telling through capitalist journalism. During the eviction of the organizers of the Christodora building, a deal with the city was to give up that building, for the then vacant PS64. It was then, Chino Garcia and other activist, saw the opportunity to reinstate their operations at PS64, renaming it CHARAS Community Center.

There was a long battle in and out of court for the CHARAS building to remain, even having financial support from politicians to keep the building in the hands of community members/activists. But in the month of December 2001, the judge ruled that the activist should be evicted. But that’s not the end to the opposition of a property pimp. Gregg Singer, from then on out, has been battling Landmark regulations. January 2009, receiving notice that as long as all plans abide by the New York City Landmark laws/regulations, Singer’s project should run smoothly… evidently, Singer has not been so genuine.

Rent for CHARAS was $874/month for the whole building, and so activist focused it’s work on community defense, medical care, arts, and other operations to provide social opportunity and rehabilitation. The building was run by many former gang-members and also created a safe space for drug users. It is best to note, some artists who have roots in CHARAS are people like Luis Guzman, John Leguizamo and Spike Lee. However, on July 20th 1998, then Mayor Giuliani sold the building in an auction.

Despite the disapproval of the CHARAS members and their surrounding community, the building sold to a developer, Gregg Singer… but not before the auction was bombed with 10,000 crickets in the attempt to halt the auction. The halt only delayed for about 45 minutes, and Singer found himself as the new owner of PS64/CHARAS/El Bohio. It was summer ‘99 when Gregg singer gave the community 30 days to move out.

Singer succeeded in evicting the CHARAS community, who occupied the building for 22 years.

There were attempts to evade a landmark commission, but by September 13th 2006, Landmark Preservation Commission followed through. During this time, and after, there were many attempts to dig into the loopholes of constructing a for-profit dorm, but all failed. October 12, 2017 Mayor de Blasio’s states in a public forum that it is in the city’s interest to buy the building, and it was a mistake for the Giuliani administration to sell the building. The mayor or his office didn’t reach out and refused to meet or discuss the project with the owner. March 19, 2020, Owner’s managing partner sent a letter to Mayor de Blasio offering the building to be used for free during the Coronavirus. The Mayor didn’t have an interest.

Greg Singer still has ownership and hopes that this new administration that Eric Adams is running, would approach this situation differently.


Land Use, Zoning, Public & Private Housing Committee

Tuesday, June 14 at 6:30pm
By Phone: +1 646 518 9805, +1 929 205 6099
Meeting ID: 934 3993 2803

  1. Approval of previous month’s minutes
  2. Madison Realty Capital & NYCHA: Campos Plaza I & II Non-ULURP LSRD Modification
  3. Update District Needs Statement
  4. Vote to adjourn

Community Board 3, Full Board Meeting

Tuesday, June 28, 2022 – 6:30pm
In Person: Public School 20, 166 Essex Street
By Phone: +1 646 518 9805, +1 929 205 6099
Webinar ID: 982 5541 8099

June 17 is the last day for the public to submit July agenda items


East Village Community Coalition
143 Avenue B – Simplex
New York, NY 10009
Phone: (212) 979-2344

Association of Latino Business Owners and Residents
LES / East Village

Loisaida United Neighborhood Gardens (LUNGS) 

Cooper Square Committee 

East Village Independent Merchants Association 

Good Old Lower East Side (GOLES) 

LES Ecology Center 

Loisaida Inc. 

Lower Eastside Girls Club C

Community Board 3

Bowery Alliance of Neighbors

Chatham Sq – Cooper Sq

First Street Block Association
1st St, 1st-2nd Ave

Friends of Meltzer Park (FOMP)
1st Ave-Ave A, 1st-2nd St

2nd Street Block Association
2nd St, 1st Ave-Ave A

East 3rd Street Block Association
Ave B-D

East 4th Street Avenues A-B Block Association
4th St, Ave A-B

All The Way East 4th Street Block Association
4th St, Ave C-D

East 5th Street Block Association
1st-3rd Aves, 2nd Ave between 4th and 6th

6BC Botanical Garden
6th St, Ave B-C

Eight B C D Block Association
8th St, Ave B-D

EVORA East Village Owners Renters Association
8th-12th St, 3rd-4th Ave

9th Street A-1 Block Association
9th St, Ave A-1st Ave

9BC Tompkins Sq Block Association
9th St, Ave B-C

La Plaza Cultural de Armando Perez
9th St & Ave C

10th-Stuyvesant Streets Block Association
10th St, Stuyvesant, 2nd-3rd Ave

A1E 10th St Block Association
10th St, 1st Ave-Ave A

East 11th Street Block Association
11th St, 2nd-3rd Ave

North Avenue A Neighborhood Association
Ave A, 10th-14th St

12th Street Block Association
12th St, Ave A-B


Rosie Mendez
Former Council Member

Carlina Rivera
Council Member

Brad Hoylman
State Senator

Harvey Epstein
State Representative

Gayle Brewer
Former Manhattan Borough President

Mayor Bill de Blasio
Former Mayer


Luis Guzman (CHARAS)
John Leguizamo (CHARAS)
Spike Lee (CHARAS)


Gregg Singer

Madison Realty Capital (Possibly not an op)
520 Madison Ave Suite 3501, New York, NY 10022
(1) 646-472-1900


The Christadora House +
83 units 16 stories


Site Manager



Head Officer
NEW YORK, NY 10017

NEW YORK, NY 10017

NEW YORK, NY 10017

NEW YORK, NY 10017


NEW YORK, NY 10017


In 2017, Mayor Bill de Blasio expressed interest in the city repurchasing the building. However, opposition has stated “This is a result of the de Blasio administration standing in the way of granting an ‘as of right’ building permit for a 535-bed affordable college student dormitory in the East Village,”. Adding, opposition has allegedly obtained written support from more than 1,600 community residents or 2.58% of total of the total residents.

The East Village is a demographically and socioeconomically diverse community. Out of approximately 63,347 residents, 50% are White, 25% are Hispanic or Latino, 13% are Asian, and 10% are African American. The neighborhood’s median household income of $57,104 is significantly lower than that of Manhattan ($82,459), but only slightly below that of New York City ($60,762). 

 In recent years, the increase of new, more affluent residents has raised fears of displacement for long-time minority and creative communities. Local organizations are working to protect the people, culture, and small businesses that make the neighborhood unique. DOB denied the developer’s application for a permit, because he “failed to submit sufficient proof that the building would be used as a student dormitory.” A local law requires proof of a 10-year lease from a college before approving dorm development.

Depicted is the surrounding district of CHARAS

A major community concern is the limited accessibility to avenues C & D. Due to the distance from the train, the majority of the Louisada (Alphabet City) businesses rely on local spenders. Priming and gentrifying real estate suffocates local businesses in this area. Because the attractions come from the west, a significantly small chance of money spenders travel east into avenues C & D. CHARAS solves this problem utilizing just a small percentage of the space.

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