Extra Payment for Repair Work Denied

North Shore Marine Transfer Station in Queens. Image credit: Google Maps.

Contractor sought compensation for repairing damages caused during an additional work contract. In 2009, Sanitation entered into a $161 million contract with Prismatic Development Corporation to improve the North Shore Marine Transfer Station in Queens.  Prismatic, following Sanitation’s plans and specifications, installed a new deck and concrete overlay on the Transfer Station’s exterior ramp.  The concrete overlay later developed extensive cracking.  Sanitation conceded that an error in the design documents provided by Sanitation to Prismatic had caused the concrete to crack, and issued a change order to Prismatic to demolish and replace the topping of the damaged ramp on a time and material basis. Sanitation’s specifications for the remedial work emphasized that Prismatic must exercise care not to damage the underlying deck surface while conducting the additional work. 

During the remedial work Prismatic damaged the underlying steel reinforcement bars. Prismatic claimed that Sanitation caused the additional damage because Sanitation failed to provide necessary information regarding the equipment and methods to be used for the remedial work.  The result of Sanitation’s failure, Prismatic argued, was that Prismatic selected the wrong machine and methods which resulted in additional damage during the remedial work.  Prismatic demanded a payment of $76,109.62 for the work repairing the additional damage.

The OATH Contract Dispute Resolution Board rejected Prismatic’s demand for the additional $76,109.62, ruling that under the terms of the contract Prismatic, as an experienced and qualified contractor, was responsible for the machines selected and the methods used. Accordingly, the Board rejected the claim that Sanitation’s instructions and requirements for replacing the overlay was a cause of the additional damages that occurred during the remedial work.


Prismatic Development Corp. v. Dep’t of Sanitation, OATH Index No. 1013/18 (June 19, 2018).


By: Thomas Columbia (Thomas is a New York Law School Student, Class of 2019.)


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