NYC Landlord Brings Noise War to Court

     BROOKLYN (CN) – A company waged a “noise war” with a boom box to disrupt filming at a neighboring sound stage and gain leverage in lease negotiations, a New York City landlord claims in court.
     Riverside Machinery filed the complaint on April 15 against Cosmopolitan Glass in Kings County Supreme Court.
     It says Cosmopolitan execs admitted to blasting music during filming of a television show to “extract concessions” from Riverside that were not part of the original lease.
     The landlord says Cosmopolitan wants to run a gas line from another part of the building to its leased space.
     Though the building’s owner consented to the work as long as it was done by a licensed plumber, Cosmopolitan refused, according to the complaint.
     Riverside says it even offered to do the plumbing repairs itself but that Cosmopolitan refused that offer as well.
     Last month, Riverside allegedly counter-offered Cosmopolitan’s request to terminate its lease early to move to New Jersey if it agreed to stop the noise. That offer also was rejected, according to the complaint.
     Riverside says Cosmopolitan’s president even tried to extort $20,000 from a production team to stop the noise.
     Cosmopolitan has not returned a phone call seeking comment.
     Riverside says police were called repeatedly over the noise issues, but that Cosmopolitan officials just turned the music down until they left.
     “No production company will rent plaintiff’s soundstage for productions with crazy noisy tenants in the contiguous space,” according to the 22-page complaint.
     Riverside allegedly moved in to the southeast side of the building in Brooklyn in 2011.
     It says the activities jeopardize its reputation and ability to rent out its sound stage, while also damaging the local economy since production crews typically employ hundreds of people who in turn spend money at area businesses.
     “Defendant’s ongoing misconduct has rendered the soundstage unusable,” according to the complaint. “Riverside therefore cannot contract out – or even show – the premises to entertainment companies for prospective productions.”
     The complaint also accuses Cosmopolitan of being late with its rent, failing to keep mandatory insurance, and building out the space in violation of the lease.
     Riverside says it’s lost “thousands of dollars” because of the “excessive and unreasonable noise.”
     The landlord wants unspecified damages and a restraining order to stop the noise for breach of contract and private nuisance.
     It is represented by Anthony Paduano, who did not respond to a call for comment.

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