Developers of crane collapse site are old family firms

By Jovana Rizzo | May 30, 2008 05:26PM

The DeMatteis Organization and the Mattone Group, the developers of 333 East 91st Street, where a collapsing crane accident killed at least two people today, are both old family-run firms with roots in the outer boroughs.

The DeMatteis Organization is owned and operated by Richard and Scott DeMatteis and based in Elmont, Long Island. The owners’ grandfather, Leon DeMatteis, started the business in Brooklyn in 1918.

DeMatteis owns Linden Plaza, a 1,527-apatment Mitchell-Lama affordable housing complex in East New York, Brooklyn. Last month, The Real Deal reported that DeMatteis would spend $130 million to upgrade the aging structure.

Last year, DeMatteis told the residents of its Knickerbocker House at 91st Street and Second Avenue in Manhattan that it was withdrawing the building from the Mitchell-Lama program.

DeMatteis has previously worked with the developer of the Turtle Bay tower at 303 East 51st Street, where a March 15 crane collapse killed seven people. DeMatteis and Kennelly Development Company teamed up on the Sycamore condominium, at 30th Street and Second Avenue.

The Queens-based Mattone Group started out as a law firm in 1956. Joseph Mattone, who dealt with real estate financing and development, launched the firm and still runs it with his sons, Carl and Michael.

The Mattone Group operates the Jamaica Center in Queens, a large retail complex that opened in 2002.

Mattone also operates the Pathmark Plaza in Springfield Gardens, Queens, and the Embassy Tower apartment complex and retail center on 68th Street and Broadway in Manhattan.

The developers broke ground at 333 East 91st Street last September. The Azure Condominium was planned as a 33-story, 127-unit building. SLCE Architects designed the building and Brown Harris Stevens is the sales and marketing agent.

The Real Deal reported in January’s issue that the developers were planning to build a school next door to the condominium.