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News & Publications >> Press & Media >> Millennium, Salesforce Towers Duke It Out Over Tilting Woes

Millennium, Salesforce Towers Duke It Out Over Tilting Woes

George (Tim) McDonnell in Law360

Law360 (August 28, 2018) The homeowners’ association at the tilting Millennium Tower told a San Francisco judge Tuesday that it shouldn’t be on the hook for construction, insurance and litigation costs incurred by the nearby, recently completed Salesforce Tower, which purportedly had to deal with extra costs stemming from the Millennium Tower’s sinking woes. The Salesforce Tower’s owner, Boston Properties subsidiary Transbay Tower LLC, and its general contractor, Clark Hathaway Dinwiddie, allege the Millennium Tower’s sinking has compromised neighboring lots. When the Salesforce Tower — the second-largest building west of the Mississippi River — began construction in 2013, it had to take extra insurance and construction precautions, attorneys said at a hearing Tuesday. At Tuesday's hearing in San Francisco, California Superior Court Judge Curtis Karnow wondered if Millennium’s developer and the residents could be held jointly liable for the Salesforce’s issues, because the claims were derived from the same problem — the Millennium’s sinking and tilting. “Almost by definition, all the damage suffered by your clients — even if to some extent they can be put at the feet of Millennium Tower Association, they must also be put at the feet of Mission Street Development,” he told the Salesforce Tower’s attorneys. “You would not have suffered the damage you did had the [Millennium’s] developer not done something that pushed it down to 16 inches.” George (Tim) McDonnell of Allen Matkins Leck Gamble Mallory & Natsis, attorney for Boston Properties and Transbay Tower LLC, sought to separate out the claims against the developer and the residents, saying they were “independent, separate and apart.” “Our complaint is focusing on the damage across the street,” he said. “Theirs is not the only building that's been affected, and we spent a lot of money, a lot of time, and a lot of attorneys’ fees addressing that.”