From the Wall Street Journal:
A Manhattan townhouse owner is being forced to do something few, if any, New York homeowners have ever done before: tear down a top-floor addition to a building to comply with city landmark regulations.
The townhouse at 12-14 W. 68th St. seen before (above) and after (below) a sixth floor was added.
The Landmark Preservation Commission decided in March that a sixth-floor addition to the building at 12-13 West 68th St. was in violation of landmark rules. The building's owner has begun taking steps to remove the entire floor, according to a commission official.
How that new floor ever got approved and constructed in the first place is just one of the many disputes surrounding this $10 million property that is causing a ruckus on the West Side by the neighborhood's preservation advocates.
The demolition of the townhouse's sixth-floor addition could be the first time the city forced a building owner to destroy part of the property for what amounts primarily to aesthetic considerations.
"This is the biggest nightmare for a homeowner," says Ross Sandler, a professor at New York Law School. "An addition is built without the proper authority. The owner has a big headache."
Arthur Minerof, the building's owner, declined to comment.
The case offers a revealing look inside the preservation movement, which began to become better organized and more aggressive during the property-market boom.
The preservation movement in Manhattan, maybe. The preservation movement in Queens is still a joke.
And how did the DOB give permission for this with the property being flagged as a landmark? Or was it?
(Amazingly, it actually looks better now than it did before...)