2010-02-19 / Top Stories

From ‘Shots Fired’ To ‘High-Toned’ To ‘Undecided’

123-11 RBB To Morph Once Again
By Howard Schwach

The building at 123-11 Rockaway Beach Boulevard remains empty while the new owners make plans. This 2006 file photo shows the building undergoing renovation.  The building at 123-11 Rockaway Beach Boulevard remains empty while the new owners make plans. This 2006 file photo shows the building undergoing renovation. In October of 2004, a task force of city agencies led by Community Board 14 District Manager Jonathan Gaska invaded a multi-story apartment house at 123-11 Rockaway Beach Boulevard in Rockaway Park.

Just days previous, cops had invaded the same building for a call of multiple shots fired inside one of the apartments.

At the time, Danny Ruscillo, now the president of the 100 Precinct Community Council said, “This building has been causing us problems for a long time. I am not surprised that somebody in that building has a gun.”

Shortly after that incident, the building was purchased by a Canadian man named Shawn Mann, who pledged that the building would be renovated as luxury apartments that would be sold as condominiums.

“We’re going to bring this building up to the level the community wants,” he said.

And, he was true to his word.

The building was gutted and new balconies were added, as was a swimming pool.

Open houses, replete with wine and cheese were held, but the great majority of condominium apartments were not sold.

Apartments were rented on a shortterm basis to orthodox Jews who wanted to be close to the beach, but could not travel on shabbos.

Even that did not help the owners, however.

This week, several notices appeared stuck to the front door. National Grid was owed $14,000.

LIPA was owed more than $18,000.

That, despite the fact that the building was empty the great majority of the time.

In addition, garbage was piling up in the rear of the building, spurring neighbors to complain that the trash was drawing rats.

A call to the mortgage company listed on a large sign still hanging on the building revealed that the building went bust and that there are new owners, also in Canada.

A call to the new owner, Richard Walf, revealed that the property changed hands in November and that the new owners have decided to stop advertising the units until some decisions could be made.

“We have not yet decided on a plan for the future of the building,” Walf told The Wave this week. “It is currently empty and will remain so for some time.”

He did promise, however, to let the community know when plans for the building are solidified.

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