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Governors Island Group Sues Contractors

Monday, February 27, 2017

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The group spearheading a major renovation of Governors Island, in New York City, is reportedly suing a major contractor and a marine engineering consultant over alleged errors in the planning and construction of lift bridges and the rehabilitation of a seawall.

According to DNAInfo New York, the Trust for Governors Island filed suit Feb. 15 against Turner Construction and a subcontractor, Ocean and Coastal Consultants, hired by Turner. The suit reportedly alleges “malpractice” on the part of OCC, in relation to errors in the design of the bridges, which connect ferries to docks on the island, and plans for the seawall work.

Governors Island
© iStock.com / Phototreat

The Trust for Governor's Island has reportedly sued a general contractor and subcontractor for alleged shoddy work on sewall rehabilitation and dock bridge construction.

DNAInfo reports that the suit, filed Feb. 15 in Manhattan’s Supreme Court (a statewide trial-level court), claims that incorrect measurements and improper material selection on the bridges and ferry docks have led to hundreds of thousands of dollars in fixes. The full text of the suit was not immediately available Friday (Feb. 24).

According to DNAInfo, the Trust claims that "no marine contractor would be able to rehabilitate the seawall as specified by OCC," and that the island group had to pursue a different plan for the seawall.

Millions at Stake

The Trust is reportedly seeking at least $2.4 million from each of the two defendants.

A representative of Turner Construction noted to PaintSquare News that the company worked on the island project for more than eight years, and completed its obligations in September 2016. "Turner and the contractors working on the projects completed their obligations regarding this matter and we look forward to a swift and amicable resolution," the company said in a statement.

COWI NA, the parent company of OCC, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday (Feb. 24), and reportedly did not respond to DNAInfo’s request for information. A representative of the Trust for Governors Island told PaintSquare News the organization has no comment on the matter at this time.

The Trust for Governors Island is a nonprofit that was set up by the City of New York to guide the renovation of the island into a tourist destination.

The Governors Island website notes that work to rehab the seawall, which took place in 2014, included new concrete support and repairs to the wall on the north end of the island, and the addition of a revetment, a sloped abutment to handle waves, onto the wall on the south end.

Turner Construction is one of the largest construction firms in the United States, with annual revenues of $10 billion. The company has managed projects including the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, completed in Dubai in 2010.

Governors Island History

New York City unveiled its plans for the renovation of Governors Island in 2010, with work commencing in 2012. The island, just south of Manhattan and west of Brooklyn’s Red Hook neighborhood, was a military site for decades, and got its name because it was reserved for colonial governors prior to the U.S. Revolution.

The city bought the land for $1 in 2003 and has since made it into a site for recreation and cultural events.

Last year, the Trust opened The Hills, a series of artifical hills up to 70 feet tall, made from recycled construction and fill materials. In the future, the group plans to add tenants to the island's historic district and development zone.

The island, despite its proximity to two major population centers, is accessible only by ferry.

Last year, artist Nancy Nowacek raised $25,000 to create a one-day “floating bridge” to connect Red Hook to the island for pedestrians; the project was proposed for summer 2017, but no solid date has been set, if the idea comes to fruition.

   

Tagged categories: Bridges; Contractors; Engineers; Laws and litigation; Lawsuits; Marine; North America; Quality Control

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