Staten Island, NY - NYC Ferris Wheel Developer Says Partners Are Squeezing Him Out Because He Is Chasidic
Staten Island, NY - A 630 foot Ferris wheel currently under construction in Staten Island is taking center stage in a lawsuit, as the developer of the wheel has sued his partners for shutting him out of the project because of his Chasidic appearance.
Meir Laufer, chairman of the board for New York Wheel, filed papers in State Supreme court in November charging that investors conspired against him, manufacturing ways to dilute his share in the project both financially and otherwise, as reported by The Real Deal. In earlier legal papers filed in July, Laufer claimed that he was treated differently than other investors and board members, which included the Feil Organization, well known investor Richard Marin, Lloyd Goldman of BLDG Management and businessman Joseph Nakash because of his Chasidic garb.
“Marin was even so bold as to tell Laufer that, in order to attract investors, the project could not have ‘more than one board member from ‘your community,’’” stated the court documents.
Laufer claims that his stake in the project has been reduced from its original 33 to just 3 percent because of various financial manipulations, some of which were ill conceived. He also stated that his name was removed from all press releases, that he has been excluded from project updates and that he has been forbidden from speaking out publicly about the project.
According to Laufer, the New York Wheel concept was born in 2008 after he found himself intrigued by the London Eye and envisioned a similar attraction for New York City. Laufer met with the Eye’s lead engineer in London and four years later Mayor Bloomberg announced that the wheel, one of the tallest in the world, would be located on the Staten Island waterfront, next to the baseball stadium and the Staten Island Ferry terminal. The New York Wheel is expected to attract 4.5 million visitors annually and as of this week, developers are projecting first year pre-tax revenues of $127.85 million when the wheel opens in 2017.
More of today's headlines“Washington - Mexico will work with any U.S. administration, including one headed by Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump, but firmly rejects racism and...” Washington - Minister: Mexico Would Work With Trump But Rejects Xenophobia “New Delhi -A technician working for state-owned Air India died in a "mishap" at an airport in Mumbai on Wednesday evening, according the airline's official Twitter...” New Delhi - Air India Technician Sucked Into Engine At Mumbai Airport