More than 20 percent of Brooklyn’s smoking complaints come from one building

October 21, 2019 Noah Goldberg
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You’ll never guess which New York borough has filed the most 311 complaints about smoking in buildings over the past year. [Cough] It’s Brooklyn [cough].

Between August 2018 and August 2019, more than 500 complaints were lodged by Brooklynites to the city’s non-emergency hotline regarding smoking-related issues, according to an analysis by real estate data portal But one building may have skewed those numbers.

More than 5 percent of the entire city’s smoking-related complaints — and more than 20 percent of Brooklyn’s — came from a single Bedford-Stuyvesant address: 270 Pulaski St. The 72-unit building was responsible for 123 complaints about smoking over the past year.

“If I had asthma, or children with asthma, I’d think twice about moving into a building like this,” said Aaron Ghitelman of

News for those who live, work and play in Brooklyn and beyond

Citywide, residents filed more than 1,800 complaints with 311 over the past year, according to the study.

The city established a new law in 2017 that requires landlords to “create and share a policy on smoking with current and future tenants,” so that people could make more informed decisions on where to live if they smoke, or if they are bothered by others sparking up.

Here’s the breakdown of complaints borough by borough:

  • Brooklyn: 557 complaints across 172 buildings
  • Manhattan: 540 complaints across 179 buildings
  • The Bronx: 394 complaints across 141 buildings
  • Queens: 262 complaints across 92 buildings
  • Staten Island: 85 complaints across 11 buildings

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    • Brooklyn

      Having to breath in someone else’s cigarette smoke is a worth while complaint. Glad we have what you call “whiners” putting effort into bringing this problem to light.

      Now let’s hope NYC will begin to crack down on smokers making life miserable for others.

      • AudreySilk

        123 complaints from one address with 72 units has all the potential to indicate it’s likely coming from the same one person. So, yes, whiner. (And considering we’re talking about apartments you are no more “breathing in” cigarette smoke than you are eating what someone else is cooking.)

        • Brooklyn

          Now let’s apply the whiner concept. Imagine how bad it was to compel that person to put in so many complaints. Now imagine those using the whiner excuse to be in a smoke filled space.

          • AudreySilk

            I beg to differ. The whiner concept is reserved for those who complain when no one else finds any reason to complain. It’s usually due to some kind of other personal issue (to put it kindly). The perfect example presented itself this week when that man shot and killed the senior couple living above him because he claimed they tormented him with noise for years and complained about it for years. Yet everyone else says they never heard any unreasonable (if any) noise from that couple and all who spoke said they were lovable people. And the ultimate whiner in general is the anti-smoker who once cried, “Can’t you just smoke in your own home!” now demanding that last private refuge be under the anti-smoker’s control as well. There is no end to your tyranny.

          • Brooklyn

            Only the simplest of minds would accept this correlation. There’s absolutely no relationship nor resemblance between the two.

            And one can be right in complaining when no one else does, especially if they are the only one directly effected, are bothered by it more than others, are the only one that makes the effort, are bold enough to stand up against opposition, or perhaps they just have a baby that they don’t want to poison or stunt it’s growth.

            What couldn’t be more obvious is how inconsiderate smokers are to others. The worst of habits that negatively effects everyone around them.

            And multi-family homes are not a private refuge.

  1. Brooklyn

    Thanks for this story as I didn’t know NYC accepted complaints about smoking.

    I hope this story will inspire more complaints as smokers make being a New Yorker a much worse experience than it already is.

    Ban Smoking NYC!

    • Brooklyn

      It becomes their business when they become effected. It was an issue in the past which is what spurred the new laws. No one’s right to move into a building should be inhibited by an inconsiderate smoker.

      Anywhere where one’s smoking does or can effect another unwilling person should be banned including but not limited to any commercial/industrial business place, any multi-unit dwellings, any non-detached house, any public place including but not limited sidewalks, streets & vehicles/bikes/etc in streets, parking lots, plazas, Parks, etc.

      It’s time smokers recognize that it is not okay, especially when it comes to others.

      Police should be required to issue summons when ever encountering a smoker without discretion, because whatever they become exposed to, so can the rest of us be.

      Hopefully we’re getting closer to an all out ban on smoking.