Skanska has officially dropped out of its partnership with Forrest City Ratner for what was supposed to be the world’s largest modular building located at the Atlantic Yards development in Brooklyn.
The Swedish firm made its decision to split from Brett Ratner’s development just in time for the Jewish New Year on Tuesday. The B2 project at the corner of Dean St. and Flatbush Ave. was to reach 34 stories and have 363 apartments. Only 10 floors have so far been completed.
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In an e mail Skanska cited what it called material breaches on the part of Ratner as its reason for terminating its contract with its American partner. “Today is an incredibly disappointing day, ” Richard Kennedy, co-chief operating officer of Skanska USA Building, said in the statement. “While the B2 project certainly has its issues, we were hopeful that our client and partner would address them so we could move forward with building much-needed affordable housing in Brooklyn.”
Work on the building as well as at the special nearby plant that the two firms had built together for the construction of the development’s modular components has been halted for almost a month now, putting more than 150 people out of work. Skanska and Ratner are currently suing one another over delays and cost overruns.
The decision by Skanska came after a New York court issued a preliminary injunction forcing the two warring companies to settle their dispute according to the process required in their original agreement for the development.
But Richard Kennedy issued a statement saying, “We could not continue to incur millions of dollars in extra costs with little hope that Forest City would take responsibility for fixing the significant commercial and design issues on the project.”
Mary Anne Gilmartin, president and CEO of Forest City Ratner countered that, “These are deplorable and disappointing tactics that show remarkable indifference to the wellbeing of these workers and the project. We will continue to rigorously pursue our options through the courts to get B2 built.”