Nouvel’s “Vision Machine” condo slammed by resident lawsuit

Chelsea building's facade allegedly flawed, residents can feel wind gusts
December 08, 2015 10:42AM

He may be one of the more renowned starchitects of his generation, but Jean Nouvel’s “Vision Machine” condo building in Chelsea is getting slammed by residents in a new lawsuit.

Loren Ridinger, founder of popular cosmetics line Motives, is suing the 23-story building’s developers, Cape Advisors, claiming the condo tower is so poorly constructed that residents of its multimillion-dollar units can feel wind gusts off the Hudson River through its glass façade.

The 55-unit property, located along the West Side Highway at 100 11th Avenue, is constructed from 1,700 irregularly shaped glass panels, according to the New York Post.

Nouvel, a Pritzker Prize winner who is designing Hines’ 53W53 condo tower in Midtown – formerly known as the MoMA Tower – dubbed the condo “the Vision Machine” thanks to the way light reflects off the building’s mosaic-like pattern.

But that “ambitious design was poorly executed,” according to the lawsuit, thanks to “cost-cutting measures which left the lauded glass curtain wall with fatal construction defects.” Air infiltration through the façade is so bad that hydronic heating pipes at the building have frozen and burst, court documents added.

Ridinger, who owns four units in the building, brought the $20 million suit on behalf of her neighbors, according to the New York Post, as the condo building’s board is still controlled by Soho-based Cape Advisors.

The development firm, led by Curtis Bashaw and Craig Wood, is currently building the 12-story 30 Warren condo project in Tribeca.

Read The Real Deal‘s 2011 story on the tumultuous history of the 100 11th Avenue, including previous concerns about the building’s construction. [NYP]Rey Mashayekhi