New York, New York, may be more well-known for construction projects than anywhere else on Earth. Some of the most famous buildings of this century have been in New York. Each product includes an array of interested parties, from buyers and funders on one side to architects, construction contractors and subcontractors on the other side. From time to time, one of those parties proves to be unhappy with how things are being done by another of those parties. Those things may include payment, timetables, quality issues or any number of other factors. When that happens, the result is often construction litigation.
Sometimes construction projects face objections from those who have businesses and residences in the area that the construction project is to be done in. This can be frustrating for developers, as those who object to the projects contact government officials to get the projects stopped. Objectors and developers want their positions to prevail, and the conflict between them can drag out for years.
One developer has been trying to develop a former public school for 19 years. He paid the city $3.5 million for it in 1999, and wants to make it into a dorm, which has been done with other former school and church buildings near universities across the country. He has now filed a federal lawsuit, claiming a conspiracy between neighborhood groups and local elected officials who want to block the project. He says that one of the people working to block the project is a man who owns condominiums in a nearby building and doesn’t want the streets flooded with rowdy college students.
That man leads the management team of a hedge fund with $3.7 billion in assets. A nonprofit that he runs has made donations to groups that oppose the development of the former public school. The executive director of that nonprofit says that the federal lawsuit is ridiculous, and affirms that the nonprofit’s objection to the project predates contributions from the hedge fund manager.
Source: The Real Deal, “What happens if the rich NIMBYs win?,” Rich Bockmann, Jan. 26, 2018