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Bronx Building Involved in Tragic Fire Had 2 Dozen Code Violations

By Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo Plotkin & Hellman LLP

In spite of $25 million in state loans earmarked for repairs, the building in the Bronx that caught fire this past Sunday was the subject of 2 dozen code violations and complaints. 

The NY Post reports, “The citations, including for vermin infestation and faulty elevators, came after the 2013 infusion of state cash — and before the building was sold to an investment group two years ago, records reviewed by The Post show.

The 19-story, 120-unit building has been hit with complaints and violations since 2014.

Part of a complex initially known as Twin Parks, the building went up in 1972 as an urban renewal project constructed by the state UrbaDevelopment Corporation — the present-day Empire State Development Corporation.”

So, what happened to the $25 million that was supposed to be put toward repairs?  No one seems to know or won’t offer an explanation.  The building’s ownership has changed several times in the last few years but nothing seems to have been done to address the complaints and code violations, one of which involved a non-working elevator. 

The 2019 sale of the building was part of a $166 million deal for eight rent-regulated buildings in the Bronx, according to Real Estate In-Depth.

Rick Gropper, the co-founder of one of the three firms, Camber Property Group, was a member of the housing committee for the mayoral transition team of Eric Adams, sources said. The other two investment firms with ownership of the building are LIHC Investment Group and Belveron Partners.

Mismanagement, malfeasance, laziness-whatever you want to call it does not change the fact that 19 people died and more than 2 dozen injured as a result.  That’s a tragedy.

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