It’s been a while since we’ve checked in on perpetually controversial Brooklyn projects Atlantic Yards and Coney Island. Here’s where we play catch-up with a compilation of recent news:
When the Architect’s newspaper recently asked starchitect Frank Gehry about the mega-development, he responded, “I don’t think it’s going to happen.” This was followed immediately by much backpedaling and an insistence from developer Bruce Ratner that the project “will get built.” Doth he protest too much? Project opponents Develop, Don’t Destroy Brooklyn announced earlier this week that they have filed a motion to the Appellate Division seeking the right to appeal a Febuary 26 ruling against them in their legal case challenging the project’s environmental impact statement (EIS). At issue is whether the state had a “rational basis” for declaring the development site blighted.
In the meantime, delays are costly for Ratner’s New Jersey Nets, who would play at the Atlantic Yards arena, and rumors are flying that Turner Construction is off the project. yet The Real Deal reports today that Ratner has purchased a property within the footprint, 467 Dean Street, his first such purchase in over two years.
At this very moment the City Council is holding an oversight hearing on Coney Island development, which is sure to make tomorrow’s headlines. On the eve of this hearing, the NY Times reports, the City offered Coney landowner/developer Joel Sitt $105 million for approximately 10 acres, which the City hopes to develop according to its own plan. Will he accept? The Times article makes it seem unlikely.