NYC apartment buildings that divide haves from have-nots with poor doors spur economic debate

IndustriesAssociated Press

One new Manhattan skyscraper will greet residents of pricey condos with a lobby in front, while renters of affordable apartments that got the developer government incentives must use a separate side entrance, a so-called poor door.

In another apartment house, rent-regulated residents can't even pay to use a new gym that's free to their market-rate neighbors. Other buildings have added playrooms and roof decks off-limits to rent-stabilized tenants.

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Rich and the comparably poor have long lived side by side in New York. But a recent spate of buildings with separate amenities for the haves and have-nots is provoking a debate over equality, economics and the tightness of the social fabric.

Developers say they're motivated by business, not bias. But officials are broaching proposals to force more inclusiveness.