Brooklyn architect and developer Robert Scarano, whose many projects have come under Department of Buildings' scrutiny in the past for safety and zoning violations, was charged with allegedly making "false or misleading statements on applications submitted" to the DOB for two buildings. From the press release:
The administrative charges are in connection with documents for two Brooklyn apartment houses that Scarano filed with the Buildings Department in 2000 and 2002. Scarano is alleged to have improperly divided a zoning lot into two smaller lots for the two new buildings, 158 Freeman Street and 1037 Manhattan Avenue, resulting in the construction of two noncompliant buildings. With the two independent zoning lots, 158 Freeman Street could not have been legally built at all as a residential building and 1037 Manhattan Avenue as designed would have been smaller by approximately 2,000 square feet.
The charges and investigation are a result of a "special partnership" between the Department of Investigation’s Buildings Special Investigation Unit and the Buildings Department’s Special Enforcement Team.
Last year, the Daily News suggested that former DOB commissioner Patricia Lancaster had hid some of Scarano's mistakes, including one involving a construction fatality. Many engineers and architects, like Scarano, self-certify their plans, which are then accepted by the DOB because it takes so long to approve them. No doubt that will have to change.