Sweet revenge! Domino partner files second suit against developer

‘Domino’ falls?
Travis Harrison

A co-owner of the former Domino Sugar factory has filed another lawsuit to block his development partner from transferring ownership of the massive Williamsburg waterfront site to its lender.

Days after a court ruled against Isaac Katan in his first lawsuit against Community Preservation Corporation Resources, the developer argued before a Manhattan Supreme Court that he should have the right to quash any deal the group makes with its lender to buy up its $120 million debt.

“The new suit is not redundant because it seeks a different remedy and is based on different legal principles,” said Katan’s attorney Y. David Scharf. “The new suit seeks to enforce Katan’s right of first refusal.”

A flurry of lawsuits has stalled development at the 11.2-acre Southside site — which is slated to become 2,200 units of housing — since City Council approved a plan to allow residential development on the industrial plot two years ago.

Community leaders charged that Domino’s developer did not conduct a thorough environmental review of the site in a motion filed in December 2010. That suit is still pending and could be heard this fall.

Then Katan sued Community Preservation Corporation Resources for fraud and breach of contract in March, claiming that his partner was negotiating to sell the site behind his back.

But two courts rejected Katan’s motion to halt the negotiations earlier this month in a victory for the indebted developer.

Community Preservation Corporation Resources vice president Susan Pollock said negotiations with her lender were back on and claims her company will begin building the first portion of the project by the end of 2013.

“Now that it’s clear the court has given us a window to continue pursuing that agreement, we’re back to moving in the direction we were moving in before these frivolous lawsuits,” she said.

Reach reporter Aaron Short at [email protected] or by calling (718) 260-2547.