HABITAT

EAST VILLAGE

New Gas Inspection Regs Could Cost Millions

Written by Ron Egatz on November 08, 2017

East Village, Manhattan

After fatal explosion and fire, city to require gas line inspections. 

East Village tower gets $10 million to build “disaster-resilient” infrastructure.

$10 million federal grant will pay for flood barriers, cogen, and more.

Deadly East Village explosion leads city to enact strict new regulations.

Up on the Roof: Illegal Additions Are a Major Minus

Written by Steven Troup on November 08, 2016

East Village

Boards need to draft an alteration agreement – and enforce it.

Village View is considering cashing in on high real estate prices.

 

Douglas Steiner of Brooklyn’s Steiner Studios has secured a $130 million construction loan from Bank of America Merrill Lynch to erect an 82-unit luxury condo building in the once-crusty, ever-glitzier East Village.

Steiner, who lives in the East Village, told Commercial Observer  that luxury condos in the neighborhood are “not the oxymoron people might have thought it was 15 or 20 years ago. We’ve seen a huge pent-up demand for luxury services in the East Village, and only a few have been done.”

Steiner acquired the property at 438 E. 12th St. for $41 million in 2012 from Mary Help of Christians Church. The site, which housed a church, rectory and private school, was originally intended as a 158-unit rental building with 22 of the units set aside as affordable under the Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s Inclusionary Housing Program.

Score another one for luxury over affordability.

 

Thousand-foot condo towers for billionaire owners may be the big New York real estate story right now, but there are, happily, little stories that continue to go against the grain.

Here’s one: a century-old synagogue has been spared the wrecking ball by an ingenious new condo development. The Adas Yisroel Anshe Mezritch congregation, which has been worshipping at 415 E. 6th St. in the East Village since 1910 but recently fell on financial difficulties, has agreed to let East River Partners create three condo units on the upper floors of the building. In exchange, the developer will pay the congregation a $600,000 up-front payment, an annual contribution of $20,000 a year for the next 198 years, and a $180,000 “fit-out allowance” to rebuild the ground-floor sanctuary and basement space, as reported by The New York Times.

Two of the three upper-floor condo units will have the synagogue’s original stained-glass windows, some of which include Stars of David. The units will sell for $2.95 million to $4.39 million.

Charles Knapp, the pro bono lawyer for the synagogue, said East River Partners “were the saviors of this shul.”

It's a nightmare scenario. An explosion and fire yesterday in the East Village leveled three buildings. Brickunderground.com has compiled some helpful information for New Yorkers who want to know how they can keep something like this from happening in their homes, if possible, and what to do if it does. First and foremost, it stressed Mayor Bill de Blasio's message from yesterday's press conference: if you smell gas, call 911 or Con Ed immediately. Brickunderground.com also reminds everyone to not overload their outlets, urges people to call 311 if their fire escapes look suspiciously rickety, and offers some information about apartment insurance. For more information on what happens when a building reports a gas leak, check out our coverage of last year's fatal explosion in East Harlem.

A day after an explosion and fire in the East Village leveled three buildings, we are learning that at least two people are missing, 20 people were injured (3 of them critically), and at least 80 have been displaced. DNAinfo reports that the Manhattan District Attorney's Office and other agencies are taking a closer look at contractor Dilber Kukic. The Bronx-based general contractor, who survived the explosion, performed work at 121 Second Avenue in the past year. He was also "already under the scrutiny of Manhattan prosecutors in an unrelated case. He was arrested last month for an alleged role in a widespread bribery scandal involving city inspectors." In an exclusive interview Thursday, Kukic told DNAinfo New York "that he and the son of the [building's] owner had just opened the basement door to check a gas odor when the room blew up, knocking them off their feet and sending debris raining down on them." Kukic added that he carried Michael Hrynenko, who was seriously injured, outside. Kukic suffered burns and was treated for smoke inhalation. His firm reportedly had finished plumbing and partition wall work at 121 Second Avenue six months ago, but Kukic added that his firm hadn't worked on the basement. When DNAinfo asked him in a second interview about his arrest February, Kukic reportedly hung up the phone. 

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