Sunday, March 24, 2013

'This is elderly abuse' — Warhol star Taylor Mead lives in squalor during building's gut renovation

Taylor Mead's home life in his fifth-floor walk-up continues to be a living hell, the Post notes today.

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.”


Anonymous said...

If you look at the landlord perspective, they have offered to do repairs in the past for Mr. Meade and he has refused. It did take years to reach that state of squalor.

While it is horrible to live surrounded my construction noise, I am sure it will end soon.

Calle said...

Sadly, Mr. Meade's apartment has looked like that for the better part of the 34 years he's lived there.

Anonymous said...

This is Shaoul's MO. He forces rent-stabilized tenants out of the apartments he owns by having their buildings demolished around them. Been doing it for years.

Hang on Mr. Mead.

Anonymous said...

This guy's apartment is a dump. If he is not going to provide access to allow repairs to be made then I'm not sure what else Ben (or any other landlord for that matter) can do.

Newsflash EV Grieve and all of its minions: landlords are not always the bad guys. I've never understood the constant push back that tenants give owners who try to improve a building and a neighborhood.

Anonymous said...

Cabrini- need I say more?

Looking forward to Shaoul's latest protestations in the press of what a misunderstood great guy he is.

Anonymous said...

I'm surprised the landlord is not being more considerate to the tenant. Suppose Taylor requires assistance at some point and falls for a young candy striper, marries this youngster and potentially extends the rent control status of the apartment for decades to come?

Anonymous said...

"Landlords are not always the bad guys"

Ah, yes, and we're not talking just any landlord here. Ben Shaoul, prince of all soulless profiteering scumbag landlords, a guy who evicted an entire freaking senior housing facility to make a buck. It's times like this that I wish I was religious because I could be sure little jerks like Shaoul spend an eternity roasting in the fires of hell or whatever. But he has to live with being a horrible little douchey monster who fucks over sick old people to make a buck.

Mark Hand The Catchman said...

Anonymous at 5.13pm... a true low class heel.
Yes the guys place is a dump and he probably has some hoarding issues, but i'm sure his previous landlord was an asshole as well and that has led to a level of mistrust which is hard for an 88 year old to overcome. I saw the same behavior with my elderly mom and her place, I had to do a lot of minor repairs & painting to her apartment myself.
He obviously needs some sort on intervention to sort thru the mess in HIS space and the landlord should be FORCED into making the proper repairs: he will get the place in a few years anyway, never hear of patience Shaoul. He's probably just salivating at the day this guy has to go to the hospital and probably never leave.
And yes this is Elder abuse.