Border war: Park Slope resident claims Hidrock’s theater conversion encroaches on property

Janet Scherer claims land that's technically on Pavilion Theater property as her own

TRD New York /
Feb.February 05, 2016 05:55 PM

Hidrock Realty’s planned condo conversion of the Pavilion Theater in Park Slope continues to face new hurdles, with a neighboring resident claiming the project encroaches on her backyard.

Park Slope resident Janet Scherer filed a notice of pendency against Hidrock in November in response to the firm’s Pavilion Theater redevelopment plans, which would see Hidrock build into the adjacent property presently occupied by Scherer’s townhouse at 494 14th Street.

While Scherer has owned and lived in building since 1978, her complaint notes the townhouse’s original proprietors were also the original owners of the Pavilion, which was constructed in 1928.

As such, Scherer’s property is bound by a concrete wall that actually encroaches 4 feet into the Pavilion’s allotted property – with the theater’s original construction seeing it “set back and erected approximately 48 inches” off the east side of its property line, according to the complaint.

Hidrock’s conversion plans, which were approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission in October, indicate that the developer intends to take back its property line, the suit claims. But Scherer is claiming “adverse possession” of the property in question by virtue of having utilized it as her own for more than 37 years — including well beyond “the statutory period of 10 years.”

An attorney for Scherer declined to comment on the matter, other than noting that his client “is exercising her legal rights as set forth in the complaint.” Representatives for Hidrock could not immediately be reached for comment.

Hidrock’s Morris Adjmi-designed plans for the Pavilion, located at 188 Prospect Park West, would convert the three-story theater into a six-story building holding 24 condominium units across 46,000 square feet of residential space.

The Herald Square-based developer announced its plans for the property in April 2015, as The Real Deal reported, having acquired the Pavilion for $16 million in 2006.

But Hidrock was forced to revise its proposal for the theater’s conversion after widespread criticism from neighborhood residents and preservationists, who likened the initial design to a “penitentiary.”

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