Settlement Of Lawsuit Against Sponsors Of The Ice House Building To Fund Needed Repairs

Attorney General Spitzer announced today that a settlement had been reached with the sponsors of the Ice House in Tribeca, a 13-story loft condominium building at 27 North Moore Street. The settlement requires the sponsors to transfer to the condominium approximately 6,000 square feet of commercial space located on the ground floor of the building. The space to be transferred is estimated to be worth between $2 and $3 million. The settlement ends a lawsuit filed in January of 2001 against the sponsors based on their failure to disclose and then repair major construction defects and deficiencies in the building and in individual units.

The condominium board is planning to rent or sell the commercial space and will use the proceeds to fund the repairs.

"This settlement ensures that the unit owners will not be forced to pay for correction of construction problems and defects that were the sponsor’s responsibility," Spitzer said. "It is important that sponsors who sell condominium units fully comply with promises made in the offering plan, so that buyers can make property investment decisions wisely."

The sponsor of the condominium is 27 North Moore Associates, LLC, the principals of which were Jack Lefkowitz, Abraham Berkowitz and Joseph Pell Lombardi. When the closings took place in 1999, Berkowitz and Lombardi sold their interest to Lefkowitz.

The development is known as the Ice House because it was used to store ice harvested from the Hudson River before the advent of refrigeration. The condominium is a fully renovated, luxury loft building, with 57 luxury residential units and 5 commercial units. Sales of the units with an averaged more than $1 million per unit. Residents became aware of the defects shortly after moving in.

Some of the defects included: wood floors inside the residences have warped and buckled; leaks in the roof require that the roof be taken up and a new waterproof membrane be installed; a marble floor for the lobby, promised in the offering plan, was never installed; and the HVAC, plumbing and the fire safety systems are defective in various respects and require repairs.

In addition to the settlement, the sponsors has agreed to pay $10,000 in costs.

This case is being handled by Assistant Attorney General Oliver A. Rosengart under the direction of Deputy Bureau Chief Nancy Haber and Bureau Chief Eric Dinallo of the Attorney General’s Investment Protection Bureau.

 


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