Greenwich Village condo site to hit foreclosure auction block

Borrowers Peter Moore Associates, KMG Partners have outstanding balance of $108M

TRD New York /
Mar.March 28, 2012 02:00 PM

A 124,000-square-foot, 13-story building that was slated to be transformed into a condominium development pre-crash will hit the foreclosure auction block April 18, according to data from The borrower, an investor group led by Peter Moore Associates and KMG Partners, has an outstanding lien of more than $100 million at the property, according to PropertyShark.

The Royal Bank of Scotland, RBS Securities, which took over from the original lender Petra Management as the mortgage-holder in 2009, is claiming the developers Peter Moore Associates and KMG owe $108.43 million related to an $88.54 million building loan mortgage and an $8.59 million project loan mortgage which both matured in 2009, plus interest.

Architect-turned-developer Peter Moore’s company partnered with KMG in 2005 to buy the residential building at 627 Greenwich Street, between Morton and Leroy streets, in 2005 for $37.38 million, public records show, and initially had plans for a 540-unit residential condo complex on the site and on an adjacent parking lot.

He ultimately proposed a design to build a new 55-unit luxury condo, five townhouses and a six-story loft building on the site, after facing local residents and the local community board succeeded in a campaign to have a zoning variance granted by the Department of Buildings at the property revoked, according to news reports. He also agreed that 20 percent of the units would be permanent affordable housing, 30,000 square feet would be commercial space and 2,500 square feet would be a small, “vest-pocket park” open to the public.

Post-recession, the project never got off the ground; the residential units, townhouses and loft complex were never built, according to Andrew Berman of the Greenwich Village Preservation Society, who said that there had been no progress at the site to the best of his knowledge.

The lack of movement has been a source of distress for the community he said, which was banking on the benefits the park and affordable housing would bring to the neighborhood.

Sandy Russo, a resident of 625 Greenwich, said the developers had started demolition work on the interior of the building a few years ago, but had left the building unprotected after lenders began to call in loans.

“It’s a wreck,” she said, referencing water damage at the vacant property stemming from a burst pipe last year.

Russo said the adjacent parking lot had been on the market for some time and that she had witnessed prospective buyers touring the property.

Peter Moore and KMG were not immediately available while RBS declined to comment through its attorney. The auction will take place at 60 Center Street.

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