John’s practice focuses on environmental and construction law, representing residential, commercial and industrial real property owners, operators and developers, construction managers, contractors, design professionals and lenders. John guides clients in navigating complex issues relating to real estate acquisition and development, construction, property management, risk management and management of environmental conditions at facilities throughout the United States.

As a construction attorney, John employs his skills as a draftsman and negotiator specializing in the negotiation and drafting of design, design build, construction and procurement contracts. John also counsels clients on property acquisition, development and construction related business issues, such as pricing, avoidance and allocation of risk, scheduling, project delivery methods, insurance and bonding. With a strong knowledge and understanding of the entire design and construction process, John provides guidance from the earliest stages of project planning through final completion and occupancy, including the avoidance and/or resolution of related disputes, such as design and construction defects, property damage and neighboring property owner disputes, project delays and cost escalations.

John’s environmental practice focuses on complex brownfield and contaminated site remediation and redevelopment, environmental aspects of real estate transactions and corporate mergers, acquisitions and divestitures and regulatory compliance. At the earliest project stages, whether an acquisition or rehabilitation of an existing facility or site development and ground up construction of a new building, John’s focus is on the anticipation, assessment and allocation of environmental risk. John also assists clients in the remediation and rehabilitation of contaminated properties, including entry and participation in complex regulatory programs such as the New York State Brownfield Cleanup Program.

As both a construction and environmental attorney, John frequently represents clients in connection with such matters as cost-cap and fixed price remediation contracts, combined remediation and development projects and utility and energy infrastructure projects such as “turnkey” design-build and design-build-operate co-generation and solar PV projects.

Having begun his career as a litigator, John has extensive experience in all aspects of sophisticated commercial litigation and alternative dispute resolution. As a litigator, John has successfully handled matters involving environmental liability, cost recovery and cleanup, construction and design defects and contract claims, land use, loan workouts, commercial and residential leases, employment, franchise and commercial unfair competition and non-competition matters.

Before joining SPR, John spent 23 years, first as an associate and then as a partner, with the law firm of Tannenbaum Helpern Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP.

  • John’s work as an environmental and construction attorney has included major projects throughout the New York area, including:
    • The Lincoln Center Promenade Reconstruction
    • The Metropolitan Museum of Art – Various projects, including the Costume Institute, Fifth Avenue Plaza Renovation, Switchgear Replacement and South and North Cooling Towers
    • The Roundabout Theatre Renovation of Studio 54
    • The Educational Alliance’s Rehabilitation of its 124 year old flagship building at 197 East Broadway, including serving as the Alliance’s general counsel in a $44 million New Markets Tax Credits financing
    • Empire Stores Restoration and Redevelopment – Restoration and conversion for office, restaurant and retail use of the historic warehouses located in Brooklyn Bridge Park
  • Adjunct professor in Construction Law and Practice at the NYU Schack Institute of Real Estate and School of Continuing and Professional Studies
  • Lien on Me – Understanding NY Mechanics Liens,, Webcast, March 12, 2013
  • Contractual Indemnities: Key Provisions and Best Practices, CLE Program, March 6, 2013
  • Apartment Alterations: a Case Study, CLE Program, January 24, 2013 (NYS Bar Association)
  • Reducing Owner’s Construction Risk: A Case Study, CLE Program, June 6, 2012
  • Making Energy Work for You, Invitation Program, April 7, 2011
  • Fundamentals of Construction Management, CLE Program, March 15, 2011
  • Current Issues in Real Estate Litigation, CLE Program, November 16, 2010 (NYC Bar Association)
  • The Importance Of Contractual Indemnification, NYLJ, March 13, 2013
  • Options Available for Owners To Challenge Mechanic’s Liens, NYLJ, September 12, 2012
  • Owner’s Rider to the AIA Form of General Contract, NYLJ, June 20, 2012
  • Damages Available for Architectural Malpractice, NYLJ, March 24, 2012
  • Fees a Developer May Encounter When Generating Hazardous Waste, NYLJ, December 21, 2011
  • Creating Effective Mechanics’ Lien Waivers, NYLJ, September 14, 2011
  • Owner Friendly Modifications to Construction Forms, NYLJ, June 15, 2011
  • New City Green Laws May Spur Retrofitting, NYLJ, March 9, 2011
  • Statutes of Limitations for Construction and Design Defects, NYLJ, November 10, 2010
  • Liability of Construction Managers: Look to the Contract, NYLJ, September 29, 2010
  • Cooperative Surety Can Help Salvage a Defaulted Project, NYLJ, June 30, 2010
  • Brownfield Program Should Benefit a Range of Projects, NYLJ, March 10, 2010
  • New Asbestos Regulations To Boost Costs, Enforcement, NYLJ, September 30, 2009
  • Special Rules Govern Condo Mechanic’s Liens, NYLJ, July 29, 2009
  • Brownfields Cleanup – Case Law, Amendments May Modify Program, NYLJ, March 12, 2008