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City settles suit with developer Geoff Palmer over burned DaVinci complex for $400K

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Hundreds of fire department windows shattered and the heat-melted city computers

Sterling Davis via Curbed LA flickr pool

The city has settled its lawsuit against prolific Downtown Los Angeles developer Geoff Palmer for $400,000, reports Los Angeles Times. It sued last year seeking $20 million to cover damages to city property caused by a massive 2014 fire at Palmer’s DaVinci apartment complex.

The city says, “the estimated losses were revised as the court case progressed,” according to the Times. The city received almost $62 million from its insurance carrier to help cover the damages.

City Attorney spokesman Rob Wilcox deemed the $400,000, “an excellent result for the city,” the Times reports.

The DaVinci was still under construction when it was set aflame. The blaze was visible from miles away.

At the time, LA Fire Department Battalion Chief David Perez estimated that 80 percent of the building was fully engulfed in under 15 minutes. The building was framed in wood, which is cheaper than steel, but it burns much quicker.

The fire burned so intensely that at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power building—over 400 feet from the fire—over 150 windows shattered. Nearby city buildings suffered damage ranging from heat-melted computers to water damage from sprinkler systems that were triggered by the heat.

In its lawsuit against Palmer, the city claimed the DaVinci site lacked an "an appropriate fire protection plan,” that the construction was not adequately compartmentalized, and that the building lacked fire walls and a water supply to aid in fighting a fire.

The cause of the fire was later determined to be arson.