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Alone, Together: An Examination of the Organizational Capacity of the Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village Tenants Association

Harrison, Peter T.

For over seventy years Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village have been the homes to more than 25,000 middleclass residents in 110 buildings across 80 acres on the edge of Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Since 1971, the Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village Tenants Association has been at the forefront of fighting for residents’ rights within the complex and through the broader tenant movement in New York City. In 2006, when the property was sold in a record shattering deal (followed shortly by a record shattering default) the TA faced its greatest existential threat and over the last seven years has attempted to turns its capacity into a viable plan to purchase the property. This thesis sets out to examine how the TA has created its capacity, how it has organized itself historically and presently, and how its commitment to affordability and its middleclass identity long cherished in the complex informed its efforts. While finding that the TA has established a high-­‐level of capacity by articulating its values and goals clearly, by building a sustainable structure to pursue them, and by achieving measurable victories concerning them, the TA remains subject to larger economic and demographic forces putting pressure on the complex and challenging its ability to remain true to its historic values.

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Academic Units
Urban Planning
Thesis Advisors
Sutton, Stacey Ann
Degree
M.S., Columbia University
Published Here
June 10, 2013
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