Investment partners Ivan Goodstein and Michael Nelsen have wrangled control of three Battery Park City buildings from developer Howard Milstein and will sell off 349 residential units totaling $430 million, according to offering plan amendments accepted by the New York State Attorney General’s office last month. The amendments will bring never-sold condos to market from the 1980s-developed Liberty House (377 Rector Place), Liberty Terrace (380 Rector Place) and Liberty Court (200 Rector Place).
According to litigation notes included in the filings, Goodstein, of the Goodstein Development Company, and Nelsen together hold a 60 percent stake in the buildings, but the towers’ developer, Howard Milstein, owns 40 percent and until recently had control over the buildings’ operations, preventing Goodstein and Nelsen from selling the unsold apartments.
A late 2015 New York State Supreme Court decision gave Nelsen and Goodstein the authority to manage the buildings without his input, but Milstein has appealed multiple times. One such appeal is still pending at the Appellate Division, according to the AG filings. Nelson and Goodstein, however, claim that any ruling on Milstein’s appeal will not affect their ability to offer the unsold condos and the AG’s real estate finance bureau accepted the offering plan amendments on Oct. 25.
Douglas Elliman will handle sales of the condos, and as of April of 2016, will also serve as the buildings’ management company, replacing Milstein’s Milford Management, according to the filings. The units will average about $1.2 million apiece, and range in price from $625,000 to more than $4 million, with the majority of units priced under $2 million, similar to other new downtown developments such as Extell Development’s One Manhattan Square, where apartments start at $1.15 million.
A message left with staff at Milstein Properties was not immediately returned, nor was a message left for an executive of Goodstein Development.
Milstein has been the subject of a number of controversies of late. In June, he came under fire in a Brooklyn court, where his Emigrant Savings Bank was found guilty of offering predatory mortgage loans to minorities from 2005 to 2009. In 2015, the New York Blood Center, which Milstein chairs, was criticized by protestors over the alleged neglect of Liberian chimpanzees retained for medical research.