Sunday, February 26, 2012
NY - Holy-War Over Sukkos At Trump Place Condos
A high-rise holy war has broken out at the Trump Place Condominiums, where one man’s straw Sukkot has left a concerned couple soaking wet and steaming mad.
Thomas Tagliani and Leslie Lucas say they’ve repeatedly complained about the Sukkot that Zev Geller, who lives two floors down, builds each year on his third-floor terrace.
The 20-foot-long religious structure is a fire hazard, and Geller allegedly regularly barbecues next to it, creating a dangerous “tinderbox condition,” according to the couple’s Manhattan Supreme Court lawsuit.
Tagliani and Lucas are suing Geller, the condo owner and the condo board for $500,000. They want Geller booted from the building as well.
I’m Jewish. I built a Sukkot. I didn’t think much of it because it’s temporary,” Geller said. “I’m literally just a Jewish person living in New York City, but I guess my neighbor doesn’t like that.”
The case has nothing to do with religion, said lawyer William Perniciaro, who represents Tagliani and Lucas.
It’s about fire, period,” said Perniciaro.
Geller claims he researched the law and found that Sukkots don’t fall under the fire code.
I guess they take it personally that I’ve done anything on the terrace of my own apartment,” he said.