By Patrick Hedlund

Rich zips

A trio of Lower Manhattan zip codes ranked in the top 30 for priciest neighborhoods across the country, according to a report by Forbes.

Downtown’s 10013 zip code — which includes most of Tribeca and parts of Soho, Little Italy and Chinatown — came in at No. 18 nationwide for the median price of homes in the area at $2,901,422. That price, marking a 16-percent drop over last year, bested Tribeca/City Hall’s 10007 zip code, which ranked 28th overall with a median home price of $2,555,424 — up 12 percent over last year. North Battery Park City’s 10282 zip code landed at the 70th spot — sandwiched in between Rye, N.Y., and Palo Alto, Ca.—with a $1,849,615 median home price.

The Soho/South Village zip code 10012 ranked 24th nationwide with a media price of $2,647,611, while the East Village’s 10003 came in at No. 30 with a median price of $2,513,367. The 10014 zip code covering the West Village and Meatpacking District took the third spot overall with a median home price of $3,521,514, a 24-percent drop over last year.

Wall St. war

The Wall St. real estate wars continued last week when the owner of a Lower Manhattan high-rise filed a $175 million lawsuit against investment bank Goldman Sachs for subletting space at the building to insurance giant A.I.G. at below-market rates.

Joseph Moinian, whose company owns the office tower at 180 Maiden Ln. and other Downtown buildings, claims that Goldman sublet 800,000 square feet to A.I.G. for $44 a foot, well below the asking price for Class A office space in the area.

The suit reportedly seeks to collect 50 percent of the profit made off the A.I.G. sublease, a stipulation made in the deal between Goldman and Moinian.

Goldman had sued Moinian last month for $3.1 million in brokerage fees the bank believed it was owed for arranging the A.I.G. sublease.

A.I.G. recently sold its former headquarters at 70 Pine St. and 72 Wall St. to local developer Youngwoo and Associates for a reported $150 million.

FiDi sales spike

Sales at District, the Art Deco conversion at 111 Fulton St., have seen an uptick over the past month with nine closings at the 163-unit residential building.

Urban Marketing is now in charge of sales and marketing for the project.

The building features studio through three-bedroom units priced from $500,000 to $2.695 million, with designs by Karl Fischer and Andres Escobar. The project is a collaboration among developers Africa Israel, Wonder Works Construction and Urban Equities NY.

Targeting tags

In an effort to advance the city’s graffiti-removal program, the City Council has introduced legislation that would allow crews to clean vandalized buildings without having to wait for the property owner’s permission.

Currently, in order for residential and commercial buildings to receive free graffiti-removal services, property owners must submit a waiver granting crews permission to clean the building. Under the proposed legislation, property owners will instead submit a form to the city only if they wish to keep graffiti on their building or take it down themselves.  

Once a building is identified for graffiti removal, the city will notify the property owner of the planned cleanup. The owner will then have 35 days to opt out of the removal by submitting a form requesting that the graffiti remain on the building or that they will remove it themselves.  

“Taggers and defacers start with a big advantage: Graffiti is quick and easy to get up, and time consuming and expensive to remove,” said the bill’s primary sponsor, Upper West Side Councilmember Gale Brewer. “And despite our best efforts year after year, I recognize that we need a new approach.”

The new measure, an amendment to the current “Graffiti Free” bill, received a test run in West Chelsea on Mon., Aug. 31, where Council Speaker Christine Quinn gathered with local elected officials and advocates to observe the cleanup process firsthand.

“Today we cleaned a piece of graffiti that has defaced this corner of Chelsea for years,” said Quinn, who became bothered by a tag spray painted on a wall on 24th St. and 10th Ave. near her London Terrace home. “With the help of Graffiti Free NYC and members of the community, we are able to bring beauty back to this block in my neighborhood. With the new ‘Graffiti Free’ bill, we are now giving more power to the community to keep their neighborhoods beautiful.”