“He [the tenant] demanded money. Lots and lots of money. Flabbergasted and unwilling to be held hostage, the Zeckendorfs [landlords] began demolishing the building anyway. They hoped to drive Herb [the tenant] out from all the construction hassle and noise. Herbert was undeterred.
After living in a construction zone for over a year, Herbert’s stubbornness finally paid off in 2005. Admitting defeat, the Zeckendorfs caved and made an offer Herbert could not (and did not) refuse. In order to finally get Herbert to leave his decrepit 350 square foot apartment, they offered him a one time cash buyout of… get ready for it… $17 million.”