When apartment rental site AirBnB started making waves across the U.S. last year, New York City officials were quick to draw a line in the sand –– making it illegal and punishable by as much as $5,000 to rent rooms for longer than 30 days. In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, it looks like they’ve agreed to bury the hatchet, at least for now. Mayor Bloomberg announced today his office will support AirBnB’s efforts to put free roofs over the heads of some 40,000 New Yorkers displaced by the superstorm.
AirBnB had already offered discounted lodging for Sandy survivors, but it’s now created a landing page for entirely free Sandy listings.
By Wednesday afternoon, there were already dozens of listings to choose from.
Hurricane Sandy was downgraded to a superstorm when it made landfall in New York and New Jersey early last week, but the damage is far from repaired. Public transit is only now chugging back to full speed, with some downtown areas still without normal service.
But it’s the tens of thousands of residents who lost their homes or were forced to leave in the wake of the storm that have posed the largest problem. Temperatures are dropping each day and with Wednesday’s Nor’easter dumping a pile of unexpected snow and slush on the city, it’s no wonder the city has ramped up its efforts to find these people a safe and warm place to stay.
For anyone willing to offer up space in their homes to people in need, sign up here.
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