The Real Deal New York

Posts Tagged ‘333 east 91st street’

  • Scenes from the 2008 Azure crane collapse

    A New York State Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the city cannot deny liability for damage stemming from the 2008 crane collapse at the Upper East Side’s Azure cond-op, despite transferring ownership over to another entity, Law360 reported.

    While another judge let the city off the hook two years ago, Judge Manuel Mendez ruled that liability remains under a state law commonly known as the “Scaffold Law.” Mendez rejected the city’s motion to dismiss claims brought by a trustee for Ramadan Kurtaj, a construction worker who was killed when the crane collapsed at the 333 East 91st Street site. [more]

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  • James Lomma

    The case against he owner of the crane that collapsed in 2008 is winding down, the Associated Press reported, as the final prosecutor summations were delivered today. Prosecuters accuse owner James Lomma of being a cold-hearted businessman who greedily commissioned a spotty, cost-saving repair of a crucial component of the crane and hid it from inspectors. [more]

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  • Pre-trial proceedings in the 2008 Upper East Side crane collapse manslaughter case will be held in open court, the judge has decided, according to the New York Post.

    Concerns from prosecutors and victims’ families convinced Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Daniel Conviser to make hearing, crane company owner James Lomma’s hearing, on second-degree manslaughter charges, public, the Post said. The hearing is scheduled for tomorrow at 10 a.m. The collapse at the Azure, at 333 East 91st Street, at First Avenue, involved a crane owned by Lomma’s company, New York Crane and Equipment Corporation.
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    The crane collapse at the Azure and New York Crane owner James Lomma
    An employee of New York Crane, the company that operated the crane that collapsed at the Azure in 2008, plead guilty to criminally negligent homicide and agreed to testify against the owner of the company to avoid a second-degree manslaughter charge that carries a 15-year prison sentence.

    According to court documents obtained by the New York Times, Tibor Varganyi was charged with finding a manufacturer to repair the turntables of some of New York Crane’s equipment. He chose a firm in China over two United States companies, because New York Crane owner James Lomma thought the domestic companies couldn’t complete the job fast enough. … [more]

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  • alternate text
    From left: Crane owner James Lomma and the Azure at 333 East 91st Street

    The owner of the crane company implicated in the deadly 2008 collapse at the Upper East Side’s Azure is suing the construction company that had rented his crane for $1.1 million in damages, the Post reported. The owner, James Lomma, is currently awaiting trial on manslaughter charges after a judge turned down his bid to get the case dismissed last month. He and mechanic Tibor Varganyi were accused of arranging for a cheap welding job on the 200-foot-tall crane, which failed after a month of use. … [more]

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  • Bracha loses Azure in move from Elliman

    February 18, 2011 05:41PM
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    From left: Ilan Bracha, Azure, Elliman agent Ammanda Espinal, Cassa Hotel & Residences

    For the time being at least, the Azure condominium is staying with Prudential Douglas Elliman rather than following super-broker Ilan Bracha to his new company, Keller Williams New York City.

    Bracha, formerly an Elliman agent, has been marketing the 34-story Yorkville tower with his team since March 2010, when he took over for Brown Harris Stevens. (Since the real estate downturn hit, many developers have tried switching brokerages to help boost sales at new condominiums.)

    Then, in January, Bracha launched the first Manhattan franchise of Keller Williams, a firm with some 80,000 real estate agents throughout North America. He brought several of his Elliman team members with him. … [more]

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  • A judge has upheld manslaughter charges against an owner and a mechanic in connection with a rig collapse at a construction site that killed two workers on the Upper East Side in May 2008, CBS reported. The judge today turned down the defendants’ bid to get the case dismissed and the case is now headed for a trial this spring or summer. Prosecutors said owner James Lomma and mechanic Tibor Varganyi arranged for a cheap welding job on a 200-foot-tall crane at the site of the Azure cond-op at 333 East 91st Street. … [more]

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  • $145M in new financing for Azure

    October 14, 2010 11:30AM


    Elliman’s Ilan Bracha is marketing the Azure.

    HSBC and four other institutions have agreed to convert their $145 million construction loan into a shareholder loan at the Azure, at 333 East 91st Street, a 34-story residential tower which was the site of a fatal crane collapse in 2008. The developers of the Azure, the Mattone Group and the Dematteis Organization, said yesterday that their financing is intact and they are on track to sell the 93 apartments left at the 128-unit building, Crain’s reported. The new shareholder loan will allow the building to continue to operate while the developers sell units. As each unit is sold, the loan is paid down. “A year ago this would have been difficult to achieve,” said Douglas MacLaury, senior vice president at the Mattone Group. “This indicates that credit is beginning to flow back into real estate and is a testimony to the confidence lenders have in the building.” Ilan Bracha’s the Bracha Group at Prudential Douglas Elliman is handling marketing, after replacing Brown Harris Stevens. So far, seven units have closed and nine are scheduled to close shortly. An additional 19 units are under contract. [Crain's]

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  • Michael Sackaris, the de facto owner of Nu-Way Crane company, has been sentenced to two to six years in state prison for bribing the chief crane inspector for the Department of Buildings numerous times. Sackaris, who pleaded guilty in May to bribery charges, gave cash payments to DOB inspector James Delayo, ranging from $200 to $500 on 20 separate occasions beginning in 2000, according to the Manhattan district attorney. Delayo, who also pleaded guilty, offered phony crane operator licenses to Sackaris’ employees. The former inspector was sentenced to two years behind bars in June. The case against Sackaris stemmed from an investigation after two deadly crane collapses in Manhattan, at the Azure condominium construction site at 333 East 91st Street and at 303 East 51st Street, both in 2008. TRD

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  • Michael Sackaris, the de facto owner of Nu-Way Crane company, has been sentenced to two to six years in state prison for bribing the chief crane inspector for the Department of Buildings numerous times. Sackaris, who pleaded guilty in May to bribery charges, gave cash payments to DOB inspector James Delayo, ranging from $200 to $500 on 20 separate occasions beginning in 2000, according to the Manhattan district attorney. Delayo, who also pleaded guilty, offered phony crane operator licenses to Sackaris’ employees. The former inspector was sentenced to two years behind bars in June. The case against Sackaris stemmed from an investigation after two deadly crane collapses in Manhattan, at the Azure condominium construction site at 333 East 91st Street and at 303 East 51st Street, both in 2008. TRD

    [more]

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  • Michael Sackaris, the head of Nu-Way Crane company charged with bribing New York City’s top crane inspector over the course of 14 years, will plead guilty today, according to his attorney. Sackaris allegedly paid inspector James Delayo more than $10,000 in exchange for falsified inspection filings and licenses for inadequately trained crane operators, according to the New York Daily News. Delayo pleaded guilty in March on bribery charges. Sackaris could spend between two and six years behind bars for second-degree bribery. Both men were arrested in 2008, following an investigation of the deadly Azure condominium crane collapse at 333 East 91st Street and the one at 303 East 51st Street. [NYDN]

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  • As construction and concrete testing companies and their executives increasingly come under fire in the city, one concrete testing company has received a bit of good news. A State Supreme Court judge ordered the city Department of Buildings to grant a hearing to a Whitestone-based concrete testing company that was denied one after applying to renew its license to operate in New York. The firm, Big Apple Testing, filed suit in January after DOB refused to reinstate its license, claiming the firm previously continued to operate after its license had expired Sept. 15, 2008.
    Judge Alice Schlesinger denied a request by the firm to have its license automatically reinstated, but said DOB must give the firm an opportunity to present its case in a face-to-face meeting. “I find that the allegations [against Big Apple], at least in part, appear to be of a rather technical nature and do not appear to smack of fraud or unsafe practices,” Schlesinger wrote in her March 1 opinion, released on March 4. “As was pointed out in the petition, BAT has been conducting business pursuant to a license renewal since 1992, a period of 17 years, apparently without event except for license renewals occasionally filed for [sic] late but always granted.” … [more]

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  • Two corporations, their top executive, and a mechanic have been indicted in the May 30, 2008 91st Street crane collapse incident, which resulted in two deaths and one serious injury. The Manhattan District Attorney has charged New York Crane, J.F. Lomma and owner James Lomma, along with Tibor Varganyi, a former mechanic for New York Crane, with criminally negligent homicide and manslaughter, among other related charges. The defendants were described as “reckless” by District Attorney Cyrus Vance, who said that their alleged negligence at the 333 East 91st Street construction site, the Azure condominium, where Prudential Douglas Elliman agent Ilan Bracha recently took over sales, led directly to the tragic deaths of two construction workers. “We cannot allow individuals and firms to conduct themselves in gross violation of applicable regulations and industry standards,” Vance. “Today’s indictment is an important step not only in holding these defendants accountable for their conduct, but should send a message to the construction industry that profit cannot be put ahead of safety.” Sales launched at the 333 East 91st Street tower more than two years ago, and Bracha told The Real Deal recently that just nine units are currently in contract. At the time of the collapse, 17 contracts had been signed. Sales resumed two weeks later, though whether there was a connection between the decrease in signed contracts and the construction delays that resulted from the accident, is unclear. TRD[more]

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  • Bracha takes over for BHS at Azure

    March 02, 2010 06:43PM

    Brown Harris Stevens is out at the Leon D. DeMatteis Corporation’s Azure Condominium, the new, 34-story tower on the Upper East Side, and Prudential Douglas Elliman’s Bracha Group is in. Bracha officially took the helm Friday, group head Ilan Bracha told The Real Deal. While the motive behind BHS’ ousting is unclear (DeMatteis did not respond to requests for comment), sales launched at the 333 East 91st Street tower more than two years ago, and according to Bracha, just nine units are currently in contract.
    The Azure is the site of a May 2008 crane collapse that killed two construction workers and forced a shutdown. At that time, 17 contracts had been signed. Sales resumed two weeks later, though whether there is a connection between the decrease in signed contracts and the construction delays that resulted from the accident, is also unclear. … [more]

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