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READER COMMENT FROM THE VILLAGER

Name: LMD
Date: Jan, 16 2002

 As I mentioned at the CB3 Meeting, Ms. Abrams has designs on several Orchard properties "if they can afford them", i.e. other owners in the LES are no longer "disposing" of property dirt cheap. As to the "fair" value of 99 Orchard they could hire an independent appraiser. Alternately you can talk to any commercial real estate broker and find out what the average multiple of the rent rolls properties in the area are selling for.

 Residential/commercial properties typically sell for a multiple of the annual rent roll. This multiple is fairly accurate and takes into consideration the neighborhood and the general economy and is calculated X times rent roll. If, as the owner of 99 Orchard claims, they have a rent roll of $650,000 a year; add the mkt value of the apartment he and his family occupy and multiply it out. It might be about 8 to 8.5 times the rent roll which might be within the norm. The fact they were offered zippo for the building prior to the reno doesn't make them greedy. 

 It makes them smart 4th generation immigrant offspring. Again any commercial broker can attest that any empty building in lieu of it's "condition" takes the premium as you don't have to deal with any pesky long term rent stabilized or rent controlled tenants! I love the museum's concept and wholeheartedly support an expansion. They should simply do it the AMERICAN way by finding sellers willing to accept their offer or by asking the City to donate property they already own or make due with what the have. 

 Taking some aristocratic, political approach to condemn a building after the fact claiming their neighbors cannot be trusted is a shameful and horrifying action... one that sets a dangerous precedent. If the damage claim is valid then the American approach is to go to court and sue. One might query Ms. Abrams on the "legal advise" she got not to sue. Was the rest of the story that if she did so she would have less fodder to cry wolf to the state for condemnation????????
2002 LouHoltzman.com  Top