Samy Mahfar Slapped with Stop-Work Order for Gas System at 22 Spring Street

Posted on: April 1st, 2015 at 5:00 am by

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22 Spring St.

It would appear that the Department of Buildings is on a defensive, yet proactive footing in the wake of the deadly explosion on Second Avenue last week.

Allegedly tampering with gas lines at 22 Spring Street is proving problematic for SMA Equities (aka Samy Mahfar), yet potentially dangerous for tenants. In a swift follow-up to violations cited by the DOB last Friday, the controversial landlord, who has a history of alleged tenant harassment, was hit with a full stop-work order yesterday afternoon.

As previously reported, inspectors discovered the gas lines for residential units were illegally connected to the meter in the ground floor west store. This spot was previously residential, but converted to commercial after Mahfar purchased the building last year.

Con Edison was summoned to 22 Spring Street on Friday, and later removed the new gas system.

UPDATE: DOT issued the following, “There was no illegal tapping observed by our inspector, only illegal plumbing work. A stop work order was issued and we notified Con Ed of the illegal plumbing.” Call it what you want. Regardless of whether tapping was afoot, this is still a dangerous situation.

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On another note, SMA Equities responded to these allegations yesterday with a public comment completely denying any wrongdoing. It seemed fitting that the statement opened with, “The terrible tragedy on Second Avenue last week should make all New Yorkers more vigilant about building safety.”  Sympathies seem rather hollow coming from this landlord, who has repeatedly subjected tenants over the years to dangerous living conditions (e.g. lead exposure).

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