$227 million settlement reached in Philadelphia building collapse

© Associated Press

A $227 million settlement has been reached in a civil case over a deadly Philadelphia building collapse, after a five month trial. The jury had found the Salvation Army and building owner Richard Basciano, a New York real estate speculator, largely responsible.

Seven people were killed and 12 injured when a towering brick wall from a demolition project crushed an adjacent Salvation Army store in 2013. The two unqualified demolition contractors involved are serving long prison terms. The building owner and his architect were never charged with crimes, and the victims had been seeking damages from both men, along with the Salvation Army.

According to lawyers representing several of the victims and their families, it is the largest negotiated settlement in a personal injury case in Pennsylvania court history.

The victims’ lawyers say the city is safer today thanks to reforms initiated after collapse, including tougher rules for obtaining demolition permits.

Nineteen plaintiffs who died or were injured in the collapse will receive the settlement.