While some people are struggling to get out of the Upper West Side's iconic Dakota building, others are struggling to get in. The Post reports that developer Robert Siegel has filed a $55 million lawsuit alleging that he's been barred from moving in to the West 72nd Street building for 16 years due to the allegedly sheisty workings of the building's co-op board. Seigel purchased the building's former ballroom for $2.2 million in 1999 under the impression that he would be able to convert the space into a four-bedroom family apartment with air conditioning, but the lawsuit alleges that after Siegel's purchase the co-op board told him that they'd only give the conversion the green light if he paid an additional $1.8 million for cooperative stock and $1.1 million for maintenance fees. To this day, the co-op continues to partially use the ballroom as storage space for tenants' belongings.
Siegel says he ponied up, but the co-op board amended the ballroom's certificate of occupancy so that one half of it could only legally be used as storage space. Siegel now wants the major sum of $55 million from the co-op board, which should, if he wins, give him plenty to invest in another family home.
· Developer blocked from moving into apartment — for 16 years [NYP]
· All Dakota coverage [Curbed]