Controversial FiDi building to hit foreclosure auction block

New York-based real estate investment firm Rossrock Fund, owner of commercial mortgage loans, originating mezzanine loans and commercial real estate properties, is foreclosing on an Italian Renaissance-style building at 23 Park Place in the Financial District, according to data from The building, which had at one time been considered for a controversial mosque, once served as the headquarters of the New York Daily News and will hit the auction block next month with a total mortgage lien of $7 million.

The five-story, 23,664-square-foot building, owned by Park Murray Associates LLC., made headlines last year after it was tapped as the site of a second mosque close to the World Trade Center. The first mosque, at the old Burlington Coat Factory building near Ground Zero, opened for an exhibition earlier this year. The second, called Masjid Mosque, has since moved to an alternative site at 30 Cliff Street.

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The building was home to the New York Daily News in the 1920s, according to the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission, which granted the building landmark status in 2007. Both 23 Park Place and 25 Park Place, or alternatively 20 and 22 Murray Street, were constructed in 1857 by Samuel Warner, architect of the Marble Collegiate Reformed Church at 275 Fifth Avenue.

The five-story building, which is zoned for high-bulk commercial use, has eight residential units spanning 12,528 square feet and 4,176 square feet of retail space. It was not immediately clear what Rossrock’s plans might be for the property.

Naheem Mohammed, the mosque’s treasurer, could not be immediately reached for comment, nor could Richard Dejamal of Park Murray Associates. James Ross, managing member of Rossrock, declined to comment on the foreclosure.