The condition of the 425 east 86th Street building seems to be somewhat of a mystery particularly with respect to water penetration. While we don’t have definitive information, we are concerned about potential deferred maintenance and unexpected repair bills that may come due in the future. The building was cited on May 8, 2019, for “Failure to maintain building exterior walls/facades and Appurtenances.” It is unclear when these repairs will be made or how much it will cost to make them. Given the general condition of the exterior areas of the building, we are concerned about the potential for additional assessments. However, we don’t not have any specific information about any potential assessments or their cost.
As one example of our concerns, the photo below (taken October 2018) appears to show significant “ponding” and unsafe materials on the roof. This condition is generally accepted to suggest a high risk for leaks and other damage.
- Over two years, from 2018 to 2020 multiple contractors, engineers and architects have come to the roof and terrace to observer the areas below. However, neither the construction specialist or the board has not commented on the nature of the concern(s) but have indicated additional repair work will be needed. In 2012 the building refinanced its mortgage and paid approximately 50% of the net proceed to Standard Waterproofing to repairs to some of these same areas. Standard Waterproofing is owned by Andrew Whist, the brother-in-law of the then board president, Frank Chaney. The relationship between Mr. Chaney and Standard Waterproofing was not disclosed to Shareholders until after it came out in court proceedings years later.
- We are aware of at least one major plumbing issue in the building as well as some leaks, apparently from the exterior wall. The board has acknowledged to leaks in the exterior walls of the building. We are aware of water penetration in the parapets as well as cracks, one of which appears to go completely though the parapet wall to the other side.
- A detailed report on the roof condition from a licensed architect is attached. The report suggests several building code violation as well as a roof in need of significant repair and potentially work needed to raise the height of the parapets. We have masked the architect’s name to preserve privacy, but can refer interested parties to the architect upon request. The 425 East 86th board has already seen the report, but has not commented
- Given these structural concerns, it is unclear why the board recently prioritized replacement of the sidewalk that did not appear to be in disrepair
- The board recently disclosed that a roofing membrane installed on the terrace level was only done on half of the terrace. This prevented the installer from providing any warranty on the work at all because it would be difficult to determine which part any leak came from. We understand that this is a very non-standard installation in Manhattan. We asked a specialist architect to take a closer look at the terrace surface and he found multiple issues we did not notice before
- Additional concerns about potential unmediated asbestos is discussed in separate section
- We hope these issues will not lead to additional expensive assessments. In any case, we look forward to additional clarity from the Board so challenges, large or small, can be addressed in a forthright manner. We have a large investment in the building and believe such an approach is best for maximizing long-term shareholder value.
- May 2019: NYC DOB issues a citation indicating: “Failure to maintain building exterior walls/facades and Appurtenances.“
- 2020 Update: Construction on the building’s facade, parapet and roof began in the Fall of 2020.
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