Article Courtesy of The Daily Business Review
By Raychel Lean
Published August 20, 2019
"Now that these claims
are dismissed, Harvey hopes that he and the
condominium association can work together to
find parking solutions for Brickellhouse,"
said Ronald S. Lowy of Lowy & Cooke in
Miami, who represents Brickellhouse tower
developer Harvey Hernandez.
Hernandez has agreed to a $275,000
settlement dismissing with prejudice all
claims against him in a lawsuit over failed
robotic parking technology at BrickellHouse
tower in Miami. The agreement leaves a
single count outstanding, breach of implied
warranties, against Hernandez’s company
BrickellHouse Holding LLC.
The case goes to trial
on the remaining count Monday, when a jury will decide if
and how much damages are warranted. The condo association is
seeking about $87 million, the cost of parking for 480
spaces over a 100-year asserted project life.
Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Beatrice Butchko is presiding over
the litigation, which is among the largest in the circuit,
in terms of damages sought.
The settlement stems from BrickellHouse Condominium
Association Inc.’s 2016 lawsuit over malfunctioning for the
automated garage system in the 374-unit tower at 1300
Brickell Bay Drive. A multimillion-dollar elevator was
supposed to move cars to parking spots without their drivers
within minutes. But that theory turned out to be an
anti-climax for residents, who had to park their cars
elsewhere when it malfunctioned after the tower opened in
Developer Harvey Hernandez
Hernandez’s settlement will stand as long as he pays by Aug. 26. The
agreement isn’t an admission of liability, and both parties stipulated that
it won’t serve to reduce or set off any damages if jurors side with the
Hernandez’s attorney Ronald S. Lowy of Lowy & Cook in Miami said his client
was pleased that the association dismissed all personal claims against him.
Lowy said the settlement agreement felt like vindication of his client, who
had been facing multiple claims, including self-dealing and breach of
“The nominal settlement of these claims makes clear that these claims were
unsupported by evidence, and that the developer acted in good faith at all
times,” Lowy said. “Now that these claims are dismissed, Harvey hopes that
he and the condominium association can work together to find parking
solutions for BrickellHouse.”
Hernandez was willing to pay the $275,000 to settle the claims, according to
Lowy, because it was about as much as it would have cost to defend himself
Helio De La Torre and Lindsey Thurswell Lehr of Siegfried, Rivera, Hyman,
Lerner, De La Torre, Mars & Sobel in Coral Gables represent the association.
They said the agreement was a strategic decision for their client, who was
pleased to shelve claims against Hernandez in order to focus on the main
claim against the developer.
“The association made a strategic decision to pursue the greatest potential
recovery for the BrickellHouse unit owners who have suffered for years from
the poor decisions made by the developer and Harvey Hernandez,” Lehr said.
“The association has already obtained a judgment on liability against the
developer for its breach of statutory implied warranties. The developer’s
wrongful conduct will be presented during our jury trial next week and the
evidence will support the damages sought by the association to protect its
The manufacturer of the elevator Boomerang Systems filed for Chapter 11
reorganization in 2015, and its insurer settled for $32 million.