Privé developers finalizing contracts as court case looms

Builders say almost 50 percent of Aventura complex presold

Jun.June 09, 2014 09:45 AM

Developers began signing final contracts with condo buyers for the 16-story Privé condominium project in Aventura, while fighting a lawsuit from the complex’s neighbors.

Gregory Freedman of Hollywood Beach-based BH3 Management LLC, which is partnering with an affiliate company of developer Gary Cohen on the 160-unit complex, told The Real Deal the project was almost 50 percent presold as of Friday. Privé is planned for one of the last developable islands in South Florida. Units range in price from $2 million to more than $10 million.

“We are on track for a groundbreaking this summer,” possibly as soon as August, Freedman told TRD. He said the developers just received permits to begin preconstruction site work.

Meanwhile, a Miami-Dade Circuit Court hearing is scheduled for Monday to determine whether a lawsuit filed by a neighborhood association over vested development rights proceeds to trial. The developers are asking for a summary judgment to hasten a ruling on the suit brought by the Williams Island Property Owners. The homeowners group has asked for a delay in the proceedings.

The dispute with Williams Island Property Owners centers on the development rights for the Privé site. The BH3 and Cohen partnership claim the rights predate the 1995 incorporation of Aventura. A separate lawsuit initiated by the Island Estates Homeowners Association, which also challenges the development rights, is also pending.

Another lingering issue involves a city permit for the construction of a sidewalk that a different neighborhood group says is needed for the project to go ahead.

Attorney Susan Raffanello of Coffey Burlington, who represents the Island Estates Homeowners Association, told TRD on May 29 the City of Aventura denied the developers’ request for a permit to build the sidewalk.

But BH3’s Freedman said the city in fact asked for some additional information, and should make a final decision on the permit within the next week or so.

The permit application is classified as pending on the city’s website. Messages left with the city were not returned.

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