The River City deconversion deal will be heading to court

Chicago (Credit: iStock)

The fight over the sale and deconversion of the River City condo tower will head to court Tuesday, when an auditor will determine if the vote to sell the property was fraudulent.

The court hearing Tuesday is the latest dramatic turn in the River City condo-deconversion saga that began in 2016. In August, condo owners in the building approved a $90.5 million sale of the property to Marc Realty Capital, but two lawsuits have since threatened to derail the deal.

River City’s condo board filed suit last week against a former owner of 39 units in the building, saying the owner is refusing to clear up a title issue that could blow up the sale.

Also last week, a group of 20 River City condo owners sued the condo board, saying it worked with Marc Realty to sweeten the deal for some on-the-fence owners, and accusing the board of stuffing the ballot box to win the sale of the building.

Tuesday’s court hearing will seek to answer that ballot-stuffing accusation, according to Crain’s. The 20 condo owners won a temporary restraining order against the condo board, and an independent auditor will determine if enough River City unit owners voted to approve the sale.

State law requires at least 75 percent of unit ownership to approve a bulk sale in order for the deal to go through. The condo board said that threshold was met, but the unit owners who are suing believe the real vote was closer to 72.2 percent, according to Crain’s.

Marc Realty has sought to buy the River City complex since early 2016. The firm and condo owners initially agreed to a $100 million sale, but Marc Realty and partner Wolcott Group in May 2018 dropped their offer to $89 million, saying they discovered costly needed repairs.

Owners rejected that price, and Marc Realty came back with a revised offer of $90.5 million that was accepted in late August. [Crain’s] — Joe Ward 

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