City appraised Rivington House at $65M before deed restriction change

LES property sold to Slate, Adam America and Vanke for $116M soon after

Preet Bharara and Rivington House on the Lower East Side
Preet Bharara and Rivington House on the Lower East Side

The city’s appraisal of 45 Rivington Street seems to have steeply undervalued the property.

Officials priced the seven-story, 150,000-square-foot Rivington House on the Lower East Side at $65 million, or around $433 per square foot, far below its ultimate selling price, the Wall Street Journal reported.

City officials are under pressure from prosecutors and watchdogs at the local, state and national level over their decision to lift a deed restriction at the property last year in exchange for $16.15 million, paving the way for owner the Allure Group to sell it to Slate Property Group, Adam America Real Estate Group and China Vanke for $116 million shortly thereafter.

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The developers plan to build a luxury condominium tower at the site. The city last week ordered that construction stop, calling it an illegal conversion.

Nursing home operator Allure purchased the property, which had been a nonprofit HIV/AIDS care facility, in early 2015 for $28 million.

Former city appraiser Robert Von Ancken of Landauer Valuation & Advisory said the city’s assessment was far below what he would have expected. Officials “really must have messed up,” he told the Journal. [WSJ]Ariel Stulberg