Historic Flatiron Building headed to auction to end dispute between owners

March 3, 2023

Photo by Jermaine Ee on Unsplash

New York City’s iconic Flatiron Building will be put up for auction to resolve a dispute between its current owners, according to a recent judgment filed in state Supreme Court. As first reported by PincusCo, the decision to sell the vacant landmarked building was made by GFP Real Estate, Newmark, Sorgente Group, and ABS Real Estate Partners, which make up 75 percent of the building’s owners. The auction is set to take place on March 22 with Mannion Auctions.

Nathan Silverstein owns the remaining 25 percent. The four partners, who sued Silverstein in 2021 in search of a partition sale, claimed Silverstein is making poor business decisions for the building after its only tenant Macmillan Publishers moved out in 2019, as Crain’s reported.

Silverstein later sued his partners for damages, claiming that they didn’t put enough effort into getting the building leased, and further accused Newmark of failing to market it properly and making a separate deal with the other owners to lease it to Knotel at below-market-rate rents.

Knotel is an office space rental agency owned by Newmark. The lawsuit is still pending.

The group of partners, including Silverstein, agreed to pay $80 million to renovate the property but  Silverstein alleged that GFP inflated the construction costs.

Unable to reach an agreement on the fate of the building, the partners tried to acquire a partition sale through a judge to extract their investments from the property.

After being approved in January by a state Supreme Court judge in Manhattan, the judge decided that the transaction would be a cash sale and the partners would receive the money based on the fraction of the building they own.


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