The Real Deal New York

Hotel developer sues neighbor, alleging a shakedown

The project needs a license agreement from the owner
August 31, 2018 05:00PM

A rendering of 50 Trinity Place and a photo of a gavel and dollar bills (Credit: Peter Poon Architects iStock)

Resistance from neighboring landlords is stalling some developments.

Trinity NYC Hotel LLC said hasn’t been able to secure permissions from its neighbor to begin work on an Aloft-branded hotel, Crain’s New York reported. The company purchased the vacate site at 50 Trinity Place for $15 million in 2012 with plans for a 173-room hotel.

In a lawsuit, Trinity NYC Hotel claimed William Koulmentas, the owner of 11 Rector Street, has asked for unreasonable sums of money pay to protect the site — a three-story building which houses George’s Diner — with things like netting. The city mandates that developers need to protect adjacent buildings from damage, the report said.

To do so, the developers need neighboring landlords to grant a license agreement that allows access to the property. But owners have started charging for it, Crain’s reported.

Trinity NYC Hotel suit alleges it offered $10,000 to its neighbor at the beginning of the year but the owner refused — and later demanded $300,000. The developer said it agreed on $50,000 but the owner wouldn’t budge below $250,000. [Crain’s] — Meenal Vamburkar