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The New York Court of Appeals’ recent decision in Peyton v. BSA held, in the context of a zoning lot containing several residential buildings, that the Zoning Resolution of the City of New York does not require an area to be accessible to all residents of the zoning lot for the area to qualify as “open space.” Holding that the relevant language of the Zoning Resolution is ambiguous, the Court deferred to the zoning interpretation of the Department of Buildings and Board of Standards and Appeals, which have long interpreted the Zoning Resolution as permitting an open space area to be accessible to some, but not all, of the residential buildings on the zoning lot, provided that the residents of each building have access to a proportionate amount of open space on the zoning lot. This article describes the zoning issue decided in Peyton, discusses the implications of Peyton for development on multi-building zoning lots (which often occur as a result of the “assemblage” of development rights through a zoning lot merger), and presents observations as to why zoning litigation of this kind has such high stakes, not only for the individual property owner but for other property owners who have constructed buildings based on a widely applicable DOB zoning interpretation called into question by a zoning challenge to a single building.
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By Stewart E. Sterk
In a set of foreclosure cases decided in late February, the Court of Appeals resolved some of the questions that have plagued New York’s court system in the aftermath of last decade’s mortgage crisis.
Claim That Bank Lacked Standing to Foreclose Waived By Failing to Raise Standing In Answers or Pre-Answer Motions
Seller Denied Summary Judgment on Purchaser’s Fraudulent Inducement Claim
Fraudulent Transfer Claim Reinstated
Questions of Fact Preclude Summary Judgment on Counterclaim for Improper Diversion of Water
Supreme Court Improperly Denied Specific Performance to Purchasers
Delay In Vacating a Default Justifies Application of Laches Doctrine to Prior Mortgagee
Mortgagor Who Failed to Appear Not Entitled to Vacate Foreclosure Sale
Judgment Lien Enforced Despite Error In Docketed Amount
Tenant Entitled to Terminate Lease When Premises Were Not Broom Clean
Provision Ending Discounted Rate If Tenant Pays Late Is Unenforceable
By NYRE Staff
Use Variance Denial Upheld