The Real Deal New York

Heritage’s Toby Moskovits battles with partner on projects

Developer accuses Joel Gluck, others of placing W'burg and LIC plans in peril

April 16, 2015 02:30PM
By Mark Maurer Twitter_logo_blue copy

Toby Moskovits Heritage Equity

From left: 163 North 6th Street in Williamsburg and 41-21 28th Street in Long Island City (inset: Toby Moskovits)

Heritage Equity Partners’ founder Toby Moskovits is battling with her partner Joel Gluck over two projects she claims are in “imminent peril,” and is suing him along with investor Yoel Goldman and mortgage brokerage Meridian Capital Group.

The Brooklyn-based developer filed two separate lawsuits in New York State Supreme Court in January and February. The projects in question are a 170-unit Long Island City residential building at 41-21 28th Street, and the church-to-rental conversion known as the Spire Lofts at 163 North 6th Street in Williamsburg, respectively.

In the former, she alleged that Spencer Equity’s Gluck refused to have his entity, Spencer Equity II LLC, sign consent documents for a $2.5 million bridge loan, which led the lender to insist that the amount be returned.

As a result of these financial setbacks, the Long Island City project is at risk of being stalled, Moskovits claims. The developers could lose a tax abatement if partial construction of the foundation is not done by June, due to a change in city policy. If the abatement is lost, the value of the property will be “impaired dramatically,” Moskovits claims.

Heritage, along with Gluck and Goldman, acquired the Long Island City site for $17 million in 2013. The property is zoned for both residential and manufacturing use.

Last month, Judge Lawrence Knipel granted Moskovits’ motion for a preliminary injunction restraining Gluck from transferring or pledging any membership interests in the entities associated with the project. The judge, however, denied a motion ordering the removal of language in the bond offering.

A hearing on Gluck’s motion to dismiss the complaint is scheduled for May 15.

In the Spire Lofts complaint, Moskovits accused Gluck and Goldman of conspiring with Meridian, the Ralph Herzka-led mortgage brokerage, to market a $42 million loan “to encumber the property,” despite her efforts to stop them. She claimed that she did not agree to the terms of the financing because other prospective lenders such as Capital One and Bank of America were offering more favorable terms. Gluck and Goldman then allegedly excluded her from negotiations and proceeded to work with Meridian.

Like the Long Island City lawsuit, the Spire Lofts complaint makes claims about an improper bond offering and improper transfer of the interest.

Moskovits is seeking $20 million in damages from Gluck in the first suit, and $20 million from Gluck and Goldman apiece in the other.

Moskovits and Meridian Capital declined to comment.

“We believe the claims are totally without merit and we believe the lawsuits will be dismissed in their entirety in the not-too-distant future,” said Katsky Korins’ Mark Walfish, who is representing Gluck.

Goldman is named as a defendant in both lawsuits, but the only claims made against him are in the Spire Lofts complaint. In the former, Goldman submitted an answer to the court in which he largely denied knowledge sufficient to form an opinion on the claims. In the latter, Goldman, as well as Meridian Capital, motioned to dismiss the claims. The defendants also motioned for the court to reject a Bank United subpoena for all documents and communications pertaining to the Meridian loan.

Moskovits, formerly a venture capitalist, formed Heritage in 2008. The firm has been busy in her native Brooklyn, with plans to construct a nearly 400,000-square-foot office building in Williamsburg and the 150-room Williamsburg Hotel at North 10th Street.

  • Randomer

    Biting the hand that fed her all these years…

    • joey

      she is a bitch

      • gail

        someone knows about the fire in pa a few years ago

  • Real Estate Hocker

    Interesting partnership that’s all I will say.
    Or meet me at the mikvah and I will give you the inside scoop.

  • Randomer

    Why enable comments if they will be deleted?

    • HitenSamtani

      It’s simple. We encourage smart, insightful comments that advance the issue, and we are open to criticism about our stories. However, comments that are simply name-calling, or racist, or sexist, (which sadly is the case with so many of the comments on these stories) are not tolerated. – ed.

  • richjew

    She’s crazy. So is the rest of the family. A bunch of nuts.

  • Just someone who cares

    She probably book smart but burning all bridges will never get her anywhere. Also, in this business you cannot skyrocket to stardom like this, she needs to calm down and work on growing steadily.Its simply painful to watch and I believe whatever is salvageable at this point is going to come crashing down around her baring some massive change.

  • Brandon

    Maurer I dont know how you can write this actual story on even one page. This issue has nothing to do with tax abatements and the consent of the bridge loan is such a non-factor here I do not know where you poked around for this story but your wrong. Toby Moskovits is completely nuts but you are incorrect with your reporting yet again.

  • Guest

    Agreed. Bunch of nuts.

  • Jason

    Moskovitz’s Heritage Equities came across pretty powerful recently in the news with all her ongoing projects. Made it sound like a developer to be in one line with Extell, Related , Moinian groups. But by learning of her fights and litigations on many avenues she has no future, Also in all her interviews she did not mention any partners only when it gets to lawsuits, wonder what share she has in these partnerships,

    • afd

      its family money.

      • kevin

        its not family money its all investors no family money