There is no doubt that the super towers of New York have changed the face of the city. And within this group of skyscrapers, the 432 Park Avenue is the perhaps the most iconic exponent.
At the time of its inauguration, this 96-story, 426-meter high “spire” building was the tallest residential building in the world and a symbol of the rise of luxury condos of the last decade.
But for the rich and famous who bought a unit in this tower, the situation is far from happy. A recent investigation of The New York Times revealed the extent of the serious problems suffered by the skyscraper: from water leaks and cracks in the walls even damage to the elevators, for which they must pay high maintenance costs
The 432 Park Avenue building is one of those that changed the face of the city, and now suffers from maintenance problems. Photo: AP
Complaints include millionaire lawsuits for damage from leaks and damp, repeated failures in the elevators and creaking walls, something due precisely to one of its main attractions: the height, free of visual borders in the city of skyscrapers, according to documents consulted by the newspaper.
Some engineers believe the problems stem from construction and material failures that could be common in other super-luxury residential skyscrapers that have proliferated in Manhattan in recent years.
The 432 Park, with an assumed value of 3.1 billion dollars, attracted many foreign (and discreet) buyers, some of whom acquired their apartments hidden behind shell companies with the intention of making a profit through the sale.
Five years ago, their tens of millions of dollars departments were the star of the real estate market.
Jennifer Lopez with Alex Rodríguez. The couple bought an apartment in the skyscraper, but sold it a year. Photo: Clarín Archive.
The current disagreements between tenants and builders exposes a number of structural drawbacks which, according to the experts cited by the newspaper, could be common to other towers of the so-called Billionaire Row (the row of billionaires).
Hardships in altitude
To get an idea of the numbers that were handled around this skyscraper, just stop at two emblematic purchases. The penthouse, on the 96th floor, was acquired in 2016 by a company owned by Saudi tycoon Fawaz Alhokair for almost 88 million dollars.
Artist Jennifer López and her husband, former baseball player Álex Rodríguez, acquired an apartment of almost 400 square meters in 2018 for $ 15.3 million.
A year later, they sold it.
“I was convinced it was the best building in New York and they continue to present it as a gift from God, but it is not, “said Sarina Abramovich, wife of a former oil executive who in 2016 paid 17 million dollars for a” trophy “apartment on the upper floors, one of the testimonies cited by the newspaper.
In 2019, a tenant was trapped on Halloween night for an hour and a half in an elevator after strong winds blocked the cabin in full swing. Scenes from a horror movie
All skyscrapers sway in the wind, but at those heights the effect is much stronger. And not to mention noise, a problem common to all very tall buildings, said Luke Leung of the Skidmore, Owing and Merrill architectural firm.
Minutes of a condo meeting seen by the Times speak of sinister screeches, explosions, and “a sound like a bomb” every time garbage is dumped down a slide explicitly for waste
Structural problems were added over the years to a vertiginous increase in common expenses (an increase of 40% in 2019) and insurance
One of the builders, CIM Group, told the Times that the skyscraper is “a successful project, well built and pretty much everything sold,” even admitting “problems in its maintenance as always happens in all new constructions “.