Judge decides against expediting Privé and city of Aventura lawsuit

Privé also filed lawsuit against residents for $225M

Feb.February 17, 2015 11:15 AM

Privé and its developers from left: Charles Phelan, Gregory Friedman, Gary Cohen (sitting) and Daniel Lebensohn

Nearly a month after developers of Privé at Island Estates filed a $200 million lawsuit against the city of Aventura, and after attorneys on both sides agreed to expedite a portion of the case, a judge decided against fast-tracking a portion of the lawsuit.

Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge Jerald Bagley decided not to expedite the motion to dismiss, which would have allowed construction to begin had Privé won and limited monetary damages, according to a press release.

“The city has chosen a path that exposes its residents to greater liability,” developer Gary Cohen said in a statement. “Its leaders asked for and had more than one opportunity to resolve the matter quickly and with less financial impact. And they have chosen not to do that.”

Developers of the 160-unit, 16-story twin tower condo development also filed a lawsuit against individual property owners who have blocked the development for $225 million earlier this month.

Construction has been stalled by litigation over an issue with the sidewalks and pending building permits.

Raffanello told The Real Deal that the judge’s decision was “another significant blow to the developers” of Privé at Island Estates.

“Calling the individual homeowners ‘spoiled brats’ and proclaiming open and transparent city commission and homeowner town-hall meetings ‘conspiracies’ is their substitute for facts, evidence and law,” Susan Raffanello, attorney for the homeowners on Island Estates, said in a statement earlier in February.

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