Prominent African-American investor Alphonse "Buddy" Fletcher Jr.'s explosive discrimination lawsuit against the Dakota co-op board was filed after the longtime resident of the Upper West Side landmark was denied the apartment next to his own. Fletcher had agreed to buy the late Ruth Proskauer Smith's two-bedroom apartment on the fifth floor for $5.7 million in cash, and when the Dakota's leadership (a group he was once a member of) said no, the trouble began. Then Dakota resident Pamela Lovinger, who lives on the other side of Smith's apartment, resigned from the board and listed her apartment for sale as a package with Fletcher's desired digs for $19.5 million. Even peace-loving Yoko Ono might have detected something wrong with that chain of events, but just keep on tweeting, Yoko, because the PriceChopper has arrived to exact some vengeance.
Ruth P. Smith, a reproductive rights activist from a prominent family, lived in the Dakota apartment for 48 years before passing away at age 102 in January 2010. Her apartment, which "occupies the coveted front south corner of the building" according to Brown Harris Stevens broker John Burger, hit the market a few months later for $6.95 million. That price has just been reduced 14%, a cool one million bucks, to $5.95 million. Obviously this affects Lovinger as well. The price on that combo offering has been dropped $1.55 million, from from $19.5 million to $17.95 million. The gallery above shows Smith's dated digs and features the 2BR floorplan, but here's the floorplan drawn up to show how the Smith-Lovinger duet can be combined?board permitting, of course.