State Supreme Court issues preliminary injunction against owner of 19th century landmark building. In 2005, Landmarks designated the Queen Anne-style Windermere Apartments, comprised of three buildings located on West 57th Street and Ninth Avenue. In September 2007, Landmarks noted that the historical and structural integrity of the buildings was at risk of being permanently compromised unless the owner, Toa Construction, took immediate action. In October 2007, Landmarks Chair Robert B. Tierney issued Toa an order to bring the Windermere to a state of good repair or risk daily fines, criminal penalties, and legal action. When Toa failed to provide Landmarks with a plan to make substantial repairs, Landmarks filed suit seeking civil penalties, amounting to $5,000 a day, and an order to compel Toa to repair and restore the building as required under the Landmarks Law. 5 CityLand 47 (Apr. 15, 2008).
On May 8, 2008, State Supreme Court Judge Karen Smith issued an order against Toa to halt the deterioration of the Windermere. Under the order, Toa must grant Landmarks access to the Windermere so that Landmarks can draft a report on the buildings’ condition, the costs of which shall be borne by Toa. Within 30 days of the conditions report, Toa must submit a complete application and seek permits from the New York City Department of Buildings and Landmarks for the repair and restoration of the Windermere. Within 120 days of the receipt of such permits, Toa must complete its restoration unless it seeks an extension.
City of New York v. Toa Construction Co., et al., Index No. 08-400584 (N.Y.Cty.Sup.Ct. May 8, 2008).