In January 2009, I wrote “The Apthorp as Waterloo,” a profile of the Upper West Side’s iconic and very gorgeous 102-year-old limestone apartment house, which was then fighting a battle that included guns, rabbis, red ants, Jordache jeans, a diamond billionaire, and a very large group of upset New Yorkers. “Remember that show? Gilligan’s Island?” Jon Herbitter, the real estate executive who showed up to an Apthorp deposition date with a gun on his belt, said for that story. “You don’t get out.”
This week, New York’s Daily Intel added lead and asbestos to the cast of characters: Numbers from recent tests were apparently “through the roof.”
As it happens, Apthorp asbestos rumors have been rumbling around town recently–in the mailbag at Curbed, in the comments section of a Real Deal item on Dolly Lenz’s $12 million pricetag for developer Maurice Mann’s own Apthorp spread, and in the message boards on Streeteasy.
If they’re true, the building will have more to worry about then ants.
Then again, the real question is when the attorney general’s office will approve the Apthorp’s offering plan, considering that Ms. Lenz and the building’s owners have said that they long ago met their minimum sales requirements. “We sold literally 34 apartments in 31 days,” the broker told the Post late last year. “There were bidding wars. It was well above anyone’s expectation.”
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