NEW YORK — Authorities are investigating the death of an architect who fell to his death from a New York City skyscraper just after finishing up some work on the rooftop.
Bruno Travalja, 52, of Ridgewood, New Jersey, died Thursday afternoon after plunging from the roof of the 42-story building in Manhattan, police said Saturday. He was the owner of Crowne Architectural Systems in North Bergen, New Jersey.
Police said Travalja fell after apparently getting dizzy. But his wife, Alexis Travalja, said the firm’s staff said he had misstepped and tripped.
She said he had taken his harness off because he was done after taking some measurements.
Alexis Travalja said she and her husband started the firm that builds windows and curtain walls in their basement 11 years ago.
“He was the most honest, hard-working, truthful human being who ever walked the face of the planet. It was a tragic accident,” she told the Daily News.
She told the newspaper that her husband attended Pratt Institute, a private college known for its architecture program and that he had later worked on a building there. They had three children.
Police said Travalja fell on a second-floor landing between 52nd and 53rd streets and suffered severe trauma to his body. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Calls to the Department of Buildings were not answered on Saturday.
This story corrects the spelling to Travalja, instead of Travelja.