Tuesday, June 10, 2008

James Brennan's letter to Commissioner LiMandri

June 2, 2008

Commissioner Robert LiMandri
NYC Department of Buildings
280 Broadway
New York, NY 10007

Re: 406-408 15th St., Brooklyn

Dear Commissioner LiMandri,

I understand that top DOB management are consumed by recent events involving the crane accident last Friday. I very much appreciate the time Mr. Lynch took on Friday to visit 406-408 15th St. to inspect damage caused by that construction to numerous properties on 8th Ave. and on 16th St.

I am writing to reiterate my position and call on DOB to issue a stop work order on this site to protect public safety and to arrest the disastrous damage to adjacent properties.

As you know, catastrophic undermining has caused 1504 8th Ave. - until recently an intact, 8-unit solid brick apartment building – to be vacated; its back wall has been removed; its foundation is cracking; there are stress signs throughout the building; it is listing toward the new construction. We cannot wait for other buildings on 8th Ave. and 16th St. to collapse as well. According to DOB Inspector Ross, the condition of Memorial Baptist Church at 1506 8th Ave. is markedly worse than it was a month ago. During the inspection on Friday, Inspector Ross found that the crack in the side corner of the church was significantly wider than it was just a month ago. A gap has appeared in the shared wall between the church and 399 16th St. as the church apparently is pulling away in the direction of the site. Sinkholes have appeared at the property line between 1502 8th Ave. and 399 16th St.

The deep undermining has profound implications for public safety and for the structural integrity – present and future - of many surrounding properties. The damage that has occurred is obvious; it is unacceptable that it is continuing to occur without correction. Public safety demands a stop work order and immediate implementation of an effective remediation plan, overseen by the DOB.

In addition, on behalf of the adjacent owners, I request the following documents: (1) most recent foundation plans, (2) all geotechnical documents, including boring tests, and (3) proof of insurance.

Again, I very much appreciate Mr. Lynch’s inspection of the surrounding properties, especially at such a difficult time. I hope to discuss this urgent matter with you as soon as possible.


James F. Brennan
Member of Assembly

Cc: Commissioner Magdi Mossad

The Mr. Lynch referred to in Mr. Brennan's letter is actually Timothy D. Lynch, P.E., Chief Engineer, Forensic Engineering Unit, NYC Department of Buildings.

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