Workers are in no hurry to do so…..
Working from home…
No commute costs or lost time…
No squeezing on crowed trains….
And violent crime stories in the cities two right leaning newspapers everyday don’t help either…
For the Democratic Party, which is shifting back to the center after a yearslong push leftward, the future of work offers a new area of divergence. Moderates get to show off their capitalist bona fides and progressives can be seen promoting what workers want.
Adams and Hochul have been generally friendly to the business leaders and real estate firms banking on a return to the office, becoming cheerleaders for the cause, while progressives like Williams, who is running in the gubernatorial primary against Hochul, are more aligned with labor activism and skeptical of the push. They say the moderate members of their party are fighting a losing battle that will only delay steps to diversify the economies of battered business districts.
And most New Yorkers aren’t listening to the pleas of the mayor, who said last week, “The financial ecosystem of this city depends on people being in office.”
Manhattan office buildings remain sparsely populated more than two years into the pandemic, even as its restaurants and theaters fill up. Around a third of office employees are coming to work in person, compared to pre-pandemic times.
“There’s a huge disconnect with the way the governor and the mayor are moving. There’s a huge disconnect between them and the way people are adapting their lives to the new post-pandemic reality,” said state Sen. Jessica Ramos, a progressive who chairs the labor committee. “The mayor and the governor cannot tell us what the future of work is. Only workers can tell us what the future of work is.”…
In recent weeks, Adams and Hochul too have begun to acknowledge that the face of Manhattan will be permanently changed by remote work, even as they continue to push their preference for fuller office towers.
New Yorkers want to work in their PJs
Office occupancy in New York City is at 32.9 percent of pre-pandemic levels as of the week of April 20, according to data collected by Kastle Systems, which operates access card readers. That’s below the average of 40.5 percent for the 10 large cities the company monitors, with only San Jose, Calif., lower.
The numbers ticked up after the Omicron surge abated, but have never come close to early 2020 levels. Now Covid cases are rising again, and the city crossed into a higher official risk level for the disease on Monday. Persistent concerns about safety on the subway system and streets — accentuated by a mass shooting on a Brooklyn subway train this month — have also made workers more reluctant to return, according to a business group survey.
Working from home will cut into the Big Apple’s revenue stram on several levels….
image…Manhattan office buildings remain sparsely populated more than two years into the pandemic, even as its restaurants and theaters fill up. | Spencer Platt/Getty