West Town project faces foreclosure
By Samantha Sleevi
Crain's Chicago Business
August 20, 2009
(Crain’s) — A suburban bank is seeking to collect more than $4 million from a venture of little-known developer Joseph Annunzio over a partially built retail and residential project in West Town.
Oak Forest-based InBank alleges that a construction loan issued in 2008 for up to $5.5 million fell into default in April when Mr. Annunzio’s venture didn’t pay property taxes for the project at 1838 W. Division St., according to a foreclosure complaint filed July 8 in Cook County Circuit Court. The loan matures in September, according to a copy of the loan agreement filed with the complaint.
Mr. Annunzio says he didn’t pay the property taxes because InBank had stopped funding the loan, and he anticipated the bank would foreclose. He also says the bank told him it would bring in another lender to fund the remaining $1.5-million balance for the project, but never delivered.
“They didn’t come through on anything,” Mr. Annunzio says. “We were misled from Day 1.”
“We stand by the allegations of our complaint,” says InBank’s lawyer in the matter, Eric Rein, a member in the Chicago office of Dykema Gossett PLLC.
Mr. Annunzio had planned to develop four retail spaces and 11 condominiums in the building. The building was to be four stories and was to be completed in June, but construction stopped in May with just the concrete infrastructure completed, Mr. Annunzio says. He is also named as a defendant in the lawsuit because InBank alleges he personally guaranteed the loan.
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