Elgin condo board sues developer, claiming shoddy work, hidden defects

 
 
Updated 8/24/2017 5:00 PM

The association of a prominent redevelopment project in downtown Elgin has sued the original developer, construction firm and bank, arguing that they purposefully hid defects in construction work until the Fountain Square Condominium Association took possession of the property.

The association's lawsuit argues RSC-Elgin LLC, Novak Construction and agents of First American Bank breached their fiduciary duty and engaged in fraud by hiding or not disclosing five consultant reports from 2009 about construction defects and other damages from the association.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Jason Orth, attorney for the condo association, declined to comment.

Attorneys for RSC and the Novak Construction Co. did not appear in court Thursday.

Mark Belongia, an attorney for the bank, did not return a phone message.

The lawsuit argues that before the building at 50 S. Grove Ave. was turned over to the association, the defendants were made aware of the defective conditions; the suit also argues that four employees from the bank who were appointed to the association's board knew of the defects and consultant reports -- but never informed the board.

The defects have resulted in water leaks into the building, stemming from, according to the suit, failing joints on precast concrete panels and cracking in the exterior facade cement board stucco system.

Other deficiencies include improper installation of metal caps on cornices, cement board stucco and a roof membrane, the suit argues.

"The unit owner controlled board did not have knowledge of this fact until 2016, when documents that were left behind by the developer at the building and on developer computers were discovered by the board revealed the knowledge that the parties had," reads part of the suit. "(Defendants) failed to inform the post developer board of the fact that the defective conditions as the association were caused by the defective development and construction of the condominium."

The condo association board is seeking more than $500,000 to repair defective work, and also is seeking punitive damages and repayment for consulting fees from defendants in the lawsuit.

The case has been continued to Oct. 11.

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