As you may have read in The Villager or at BoweryBoogie, Ben Shaoul bought the building Mead lives in and two others on Ludlow Street for $16.5 million last summer. Mead, 88, continues to live in his rent-stabilized apartment while the rest of the building is converted to market-rate homes. (Mead has lived here for 34 years and pays $380 a month in rent.)
Per the article:
Workers hammer outside his door from 7 a.m. till the evening. Plaster falls from his walls and roaches crawl up his legs. The kitchen sink doesn’t work.
Mead’s friends suspect Shaoul wants the poet to evict himself.
“It’s going to kill him,” said Clayton Patterson, a neighborhood activist and longtime friend. “This is elderly abuse. It’s pretty Third World when you think about it.”
You can read more about the legendary Mead, an actor, writer and poet, here. (Read this feature on Mead from The Paris Review last summer here.)
Of course, history doesn't mean much to developers.
“[Shaoul] is out for profit. He doesn’t give a shit about who I am,” he said. “It’s going to be hell.”