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Dozens Of Liens Filed Against Houston Rockets Owner Tilman Fertitta For The Post Oak Development

There is a shadow over Tilman Fertitta's recent glow of success.

Rendering of The Post Oak
Rendering of The Post Oak

The billionaire's $400M mixed-use project The Post Oak, which delivered in March in Uptown as a Landry's development, has dozens of liens filed against it, the Houston Business Journal found. They add up to $30.5M, led by nearly $20M not paid to core and shell general contractor Tellepsen Builders. That lien was filed with the Harris County Clerk's office in January and amended in June. In a statement to the HBJ, Tellepsen said negotiations to get payment from Landry's for it or its subcontractors have failed but that it expects “we can work this out fairly and swiftly.”

But Landry's is turning the tables on Tellepsen and told Bisnow it intends to take this to arbitration.

“We would never engage in an unnecessary dispute with anyone unless there was a [bona fide] reason,” Landry's Executive Vice President of Development Jeff Cantwell said in a statement to Bisnow. “Tellepsen was unable to perform under their contract forcing us to significantly reduce their scope of work and bring in other contractors to complete the work that Tellepsen was unable to perform. Unfortunately, there are some subcontractors caught in between our Tellepsen dispute and we are doing our best to get the subcontractors paid as quickly as possible. This was a $400M project and Tellepsen has been slow to respond and provide us with appropriate documentation critical to our ability to approve pay applications. This is an unfortunate situation and we will take Tellepsen to arbitration to prove our case.”

Other lienholders include Trio Electric ($3M), Dynamic Systems ($2.5M), Haley-Greer ($1.6M) and Letsos Co. ($1.4M).

Fertitta has been on a hot streak in the last year, delivering the hotel/office/residential/retail The Post Oak project, breaking ground on the University of Houston basketball arena that will now bear his name, buying the Rockets and hosting his own TV show.