Dakota unit linked to bias suit sees price cut

April 27, 2011 01:55PM

The late reproductive rights advocate Ruth Proskauer Smith’s front south-corner apartment in the Dakota building has reduced its asking price by 14 percent, according to Curbed. It went on the market in 2010, shortly after Smith’s death in January, at $6.95 million and its price has now dropped by a cool $1 million, taking it to $5.95 million. There is also the opportunity to purchase the apartment as a package with another next door; the asking price for the package is now $17.95 million, down from an earlier $19.5.

That’s the same apartment that sparked a controversial lawsuit from prominent African-American investor and longtime resident Alfonse Fletcher Jr., after the board denied his request to buy the apartment, next door to his own. The refusal was seen by Fletcher as having racial motivation. Pamela Lovinger, who lives on the other side of Fletcher, resigned from the board as a result, and put her apartment up for sale in the package with Smith’s.

The New York Times reported the lawsuit in March and noted some other eccentric policies enforced by the Dakota’s board, including no musical instruction allowed in the building, no chauffeur-driven vehicles in the driveway and no domestic employees in the service elevators.

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