Residents were also harmed by a sudden increase in fees they paid for a private on-site restaurant – $ 15,000 per year, compared to $ 1,200 per year when the building opened.
The sponsor said he paid for the restaurant’s losses – which were in part due to lower-than-expected usage – until mid-2019, well beyond its legal obligation, and residents were now responsible for the increased costs.
It is not uncommon for residents to seek additional work from a developer after taking over a condominium board, usually a few years after construction is completed or when a sales threshold is reached. And given the complicated nature of this project – briefly the tallest residential building in the city, and still one of its slimmest towers – it is no exception.
In its response to the condominium board’s lawsuit, the sponsor accepted responsibility for some of the items identified, noting that “432 Park’s sophisticated symphony of systems needed to be refined when residents began moving into the building. “. But he said the Residents’ Council is constantly canceling appointments for repair work and residents are “now fabricating an ever-growing list of requests.”
The sponsor also said that in a virtual meeting in October, the president of the residential council told unit owners the building was safe, despite allegations of life safety concerns.
“The Sponsor’s efforts to fully meet their obligations have been continually limited and inexplicably limited by the Board of Directors, against the interests of all owners,” Jay A. Neveloff, Partner at Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel, who represents the sponsor, said in a statement.
“The allegations that they arbitrarily blocked access to the building are not based on facts,” Jonathan A. Adelsberg, partner at Herrick Feinstein and lawyer for the residential council, said in a statement. “Over a period of five years – despite numerous errors and damage caused by its subcontractors – the sponsor has repeatedly defied the usual and customary safety protocols that apply to repair work in all high-rise buildings in New York.”