Just on the heels of the LA Times’ report chronicling longtime residents of areas like Park Slope taking to RVs in order to stay in the now-overpriced neighborhoods they grew up in, we get the New York Post‘s version of the story, involving a rabbi enraging his Upper West Side Neighbors with a “junky looking” mobile home named ‘Bessie.’ There’s another trailer farther uptown on Central Park West that’s been decried as “a monster.”
“Why is this ugly piece of junk here?” said UWS resident Gretchen Berger of Rabbi Steve Blumberg’s ’84 Chevy Pathfinder, which has been parked on Riverside and 74th. “It just sort of creeps me out that somebody is living in a parking space, and this may give rise to other people thinking that it’s a cheap way to live on the Upper West Side, where the rents are high. Is Manhattan going to become a trailer park?”
Well, that’s sort of wonderful to imagine—what would that actually look like??—but probably not. Manhattan’s real estate market may be slowing down compared to Brooklyn’s, but it’s still pretty nice over there. And pretty expensive, and heavily regulated. It is technically illegal to leave a mobile home in one spot for more than 24 hours, as the Post points out, though the fine is only $115 and citations tend to only come if the NYPD receives a complaint.
Regardless, Blumberg, who moved into his $8,000 trailer after losing his apartment in Riverside, seems pretty content with his setup. And if he’s beating the system and riling up people like Gretchen? All the better.
Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.