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Billionaire's Row Tower Investor Denied Appeal To Block Foreclosure

A rendering of 111 West 57th St., also known as the Steinway Tower

The Steinway Tower is a step closer to clearing up its messy ownership situation as it approaches completion.

AmBase Corp., once a majority owner of the planned supertall at 111 West 57th St., has had a motion to block the foreclosure of the tower dismissed, The Real Deal reports. Though the appeal of the foreclosure itself remains in court, the temporary restraining order AmBase sought in order to freeze it entirely was denied.

The lawsuit concerns the method by which Spruce Capital Partners triggered a foreclosure clause in its $25M loan to the ownership group of Richard Bianco's AmBase, Michael Stern's JDS Development and Kevin Maloney's Property Markets Group. The combination of several rounds of financing and the foreclosure proceedings conspired to freeze Bianco out of his investment, he alleges in his lawsuit.

A clause in Spruce's mortgage allowed the investor to retain JDS and Property Markets Group as co-owners and developers, which contributed to Bianco's suspicions but does allow for the construction to proceed relatively smoothly. According to TRD, condo sales have already launched and the first unit is already under contract.

When completed, Steinway Tower is projected to stand 1,428 feet tall and be the second-tallest residential building in the Western Hemisphere, behind Extell Development's Central Park Tower nearby.