Construction Error Flooded NYU Dorm With Concrete, $1M Lawsuit Says

By Andrea Swalec on December 12, 2012 8:49am 

 A construction error Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012 sent wet concrete oozing into the NYU dorm Coral Towers, according to the university and a lawsuit filed Dec. 10.
A construction error Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012 sent wet concrete oozing into the NYU dorm Coral Towers, according to the university and a lawsuit filed Dec. 10.
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Facebook/NYU Coral Tower

MANHATTAN — Workers building a 16-story residential tower at Third Avenue and East 13th Street accidentally sent wet concrete oozing through a wall and into an NYU dorm next door, according to the university and a lawsuit filed Monday.

The owner of the building leased by NYU for use as the Coral Towers dorms is seeking $1 million in damages from developer McArthur Morgan, LLC and a permanent end to construction at 133 Third Ave., according to the suit filed in New York State Supreme Court by Coral Crystal LLC.

The construction mishap that sent concrete surging through an exterior wall at the building site and through an adjoining wall at the 129 Third Ave. dorm forced NYU students to evacuate and caused structural damage, the suit states. 

"During … the pouring of the concrete for the fourth floor, and as a direct consequence thereof, the northern exterior wall was severely damaged," the lawsuit stated.

"Indeed, the existing … walls at the third and fourth floor of [Coral Crystal's] building caved in."

An attorney for McArthur Morgan did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The construction accident occurred Wednesday last week and damaged the rooms of three students on the dorm's fourth floor, an NYU spokesman said in a statement this week. Those students were relocated.

"The damaged rooms are now safe and habitable, though the students have decided to remain in their alternative accommodations while repairs are completed," the spokesman said.

Stop work orders were issued at the building Thursday because construction was "damaging neighboring property," and Monday because new "design drawings" for the building were not provided, according to city Department of Buildings records.

The total price tag for the damage to the dorm building is not yet known, the suit stated.

Coral Crystal asks the court to protect NYU students at the 400-student building by preventing construction from continuing.

"If [McArthur Morgan] is permitted to resume construction without providing adequate and necessary protection to [Coral Towers], the potential of extensive damage to [Coral Towers] and resulting injury to occupants is beyond question and irreparable," the suit states. "The risk is frighteningly real."

The building under construction will consist of 15 residential units, according to undated Real Estate Board of New York records.

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