Auction scheduled for Beninati’s Sutton Place site

Bauhouse head stands to lose second high-profile project

Rendering of 3 Sutton Place (credit: Foster + Partners) and Joseph Beninati
Rendering of 3 Sutton Place (credit: Foster + Partners) and Joseph Beninati

Bauhouse Group head Joseph Beninati’s distressed Sutton Place development site is scheduled to hit the auction block in December.

Beninati, who had planned to build a 1,000-foot-tall luxury condo tower at 3 Sutton Place, threw the project into bankruptcy earlier this year after defaulting on a high-interest loan to lender N. Richard Kalikow.

In September, a judge approved a sale in order to pay back the loan and other creditors. Bids for the site are now due by Dec. 8 with the auction scheduled for Dec. 13, but the parties have the option to delay the proceedings for a week, Crain’s New York reported.

JLL’s Description: RData LogoTINY Scott Latham, Richard Baxter, Ron Cohen and Jon Caplan and Meridian Capital Group’s David Schechtman are marketing the property, located at 426-432 East 58th Street.

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The tower’s proposed height had caused an uproar from nearby residents who claimed it would be out of context with the surrounding neighborhood. In January, a neighborhood group filed an application with the city that would set a height limit in the area of 260 feet, which just so happened to be a hair below the height of a condo owned by one of the group’s leaders.

The proposal is supported by a number of Manhattan elected officials.

This could end up being Beninati’s second high-profile loss this year. Forum Absolute Capital Partners and its management partner, Mikhail Kurnev, were registered as the sponsor of Bauhouse’s 15-unit condo project at 515 West 29th Street as of late March.

Absolute tapped RAL Companies as the developer to complete the project, where Beninati had filed a condo offering plan in 2014. It wasn’t clear if he still had a financial stake in the project, according to Crain’s.

The new owners are in the midst of a lawsuit with broker Nathaniel Christian, who claims he is owed more than $600,000 in commissions and interest for negotiating the sale of the property. The project’s scheduled completion date is May 2017. [Crain’s]Rich Bockmann