Glass panels have crashed to the ground, according to a lawsuit, balconies have inadequate supports and water penetrates the walls of Lookout North condominiums in Tarrytown, New York.
The board of managers of the luxury building sued the condominium sponsor for $6.2 million last month in Westchester Supreme Court.
“The sponsor’s willingness to cut corners with construction methods and materials and deviate from the architectural plans and specifications,” the complaint states, have “produced an array of construction defects, failing materials and systems and other problems at the building.”
“We are deeply disappointed that after working with the board in good faith that they have chosen litigation,” Paul Janos, director of sales, responded in a written statement on behalf of the sponsor. “Sadly, we are in a climate where a minority of the board can bully the residents into pursuing litigation instead of resolving routine issues in good faith.”
The lawsuit names Lynne M. Ward of Greenwich, Connecticut, and Joseph W. Cotter of Manhattan, as principals in the Greenwich companies that developed and managed the project. Tarrytown Waterfront II LLC was the sponsor, an entity that developed the project, sold the apartments and controlled the board of directors until the last unit was sold. Pembroke Management Inc., controlled by Ward and Cotter, managed the building until March 2016.
Greenwich-based National Resources LLC, the parent company that developed Lookout North and six more condominiums known collectively as Hudson Harbor, is not named in the lawsuit. The condos were built at the former Cooney Dockyard and county asphalt plant site, next to the Tarrytown train station.
The 50-unit Lookout North, located at 18 Rivers Edge Dr., was marketed in 2014 as a luxury building, with many units selling for more than $1 million.
Kamen Tall Architects PC reported to the board last year that the balconies were supposed to have a 2-degree slope for drainage. When the slope was not achieved during construction, beams were allegedly cut, producing the desired slope but compromising the structural integrity of the balconies.
Some joists also are missing or unattached, the complaint states. Wood deck planks were not properly fastened on balconies. An inferior waterproofing system was substituted for the specified product. Railing attachments and anchors were undersized, corroded, loose, weak or deformed. Glass panels were installed improperly.
Inadequate insulation in walls and ceilings allegedly allows excessive noise to transmit from unit to unit and from common areas.
A concrete pad was not installed on the roof for the air conditioner, the complaint alleges, and the compressors were not fastened to anything. Windowsills are separating from the frames, allowing water to get underneath the masonry and stain stone cladding around windows.
The condo board also claims that the sponsor has refused to pay $200,000 in common charges for units it owned before they were sold, refused to turn over construction drawings and has not released all of the financial records, making it “impossible to fully assess their financial and other wrongdoing.”
The sponsor has done some piecemeal repairs, according to the complaint, but has refused to restore the building to the original plans.
Janos said the lawsuit is “predatory litigation” that will waste time and delay simple repairs.
“The stigma of frivolous litigation,” he said, “can also reduce home values and put off prospective buyers.”
The complaint is signed by David Gordon, president and treasurer of the board of managers, who bought a unit for nearly $1.1 million in 2014. The board is represented by attorney Edward J. Phillips of Keane & Beane PC in White Plains.