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Day-trading Kingpin Pays Cash for Building

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

By Lore Croghan


The brick warehouse at 245 Water St. in lower Manhattan dates back to the days when steam engines were the latest in high tech. But it caught the eye of modern tech whiz Josh Levine. The co-founder of Island ECN is known on Wall Street as the man who made computerized day-trading worthwhile for the masses. Levine paid $3.

75 million in cash for the vacant five-story building, a diamond in the rough with fading yellow paint on a cobblestone street where other properties are impeccably restored. He’ll turn the 1830s Greek Revival building into a single-family residence – his own. “This will be his dream house,” said [sale broker]. The [sale broker] got numerous offers for the 13,000-square-foot structure, which is 37 feet wide – unusually large for the South Street Seaport area. [Personal-injury lawyers] were the sellers.

” They’d bought 245 Water a few months earlier for $2.

7 million from the Seamen’s Church Institute, which is next door. IT’S SETTLED Developer [redacted] settled a legal dispute with some of the tenants at 90 Washington St., a 27-story apartment building just south of Ground Zero. They’d sued Moinian in city Housing Court last winter because the heating system didn’t work, and pipes in the stairwells froze, burst and flooded their homes. He had used $82 million in tax-exempt Liberty Bonds to convert Bank of New York’s former back-office building into a residential tower. Recently filed court documents reveal the developer is giving tenants of 39 apartments two months free rent – or three months if they extend their leases. Rents at 90 Washington run from $1,550 to $3,100 per month, which means Moinian’s giving up hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenues to make peace with the tenants. They also get reimbursed for electric bills from a 14-day period when they had to plug in space heaters. “We are very happy this is settled and behind us,” said Elad Dror, a Moinian Group executive. Tenants’ attorney Adam Leitman Bailey and [landlord’s lawyer] negotiated the settlement.

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