… IT CAN HAPPEN ANYWHERE!

In her August 4, 2010, NY Times article, “Mr. Landlord, Tear Down That Penthouse”, Cara Buckley reports on the BSA-mandated demolition of additional stories constructed at 514-516 East 6th Street.  As Ms. Buckley explains, the Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) ruled that the Department of Buildings (DOB) exceeded its authority in issuing permits enabling the construction of penthouses that infringed upon laws governing safety in multiple dwellings.  The details are in the article (we hope you’ll give it a read!).  (Click here for West Side online news source DNA Info’s take)

This shines a new light on the ongoing saga of 12-14 West 68th Street.  As the DOB exceeded its authority in allowing construction on East 6th Street, it circumvented the authority of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) in issuing permits on West 68th Street.  On 68th Street, however, the misinformation by the building owner to the DOB as to the landmark status of Nos. 12-14 adds a significant twist in the matter.  As Craig Karmin wrote in the Wall Street Journal on May 4, 2010, quoting a DOB spokesperson, “[l]icensed professionals are required to notify the department about a building’s landmark status when submitting construction plans. It appears that did not happen in this case.”  The illegal rooftop addition plaguing 12-14 West 68th Street has twice been denied after-the-fact legalization by the LPC.  And now, the owner of 12-14 West 68th Street is suing the LPC and the DOB!  Click here to read the owner’s official filing with the Sate Supreme Court.

The illegal rooftop addition at 12-14 West 68th Street must come down.  It happened in the East Village; it can happen on the Upper West Side!  As always, stay tuned!

Photo: NY Times.

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