Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Atlantic Yards and the Culture of Cheating (links)

I offer a framework to analyze and evaluate Atlantic Yards and the Barclays Center: Atlantic Yards and the Culture of Cheating.

Note: this post is post-dated to remain at the top of the page. Please send tips to the email address above, rather than posting a comment here.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Behind the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership's curious maps: a city contract defining "Downtown Brooklyn" as extending to Dean Street and Vanderbilt Avenue

The debate about whether Community Board 2 should include the Atlantic Yards site raises questions about whether Atlantic Yards is more identified with Prospect Heights--which its clearly in--or an expanded notion of Downtown Brooklyn.

The Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, the city-funded local development corporation that has promoted Forest City Ratner's interests, has seemed confused, as I wrote in May 2013.

Its maps long suggested that Downtown Brooklyn stops near the border of Atlantic and Flatbush avenues. At right, for example, the map cannot fit Atlantic Yards.

That's consistent was many other reports, such as the June 2001 report Group of 35 report on office space in Downtown Brooklyn.

But the maps have evolved.


After the proposal for a new Barclays Center-area BID surfaced in January 2013, a new map indicating current development projects (left) found space for the Atlantic Yards site, albeit with the assistance of an inset.


(That effort ultimately was abandoned.)

Then, as shown below, the DBP prepared a new two-page map that manages to transcend the graphical limits of the earlier maps.

First, there's a map focusing on the more traditional boundaries of Downtown Brooklyn, with Tillary Street at the north and Fulton Street at south, and Flatbush Avenue at the east and Clinton Street (one block into Brooklyn Heights from Court Street) at the west.

The second page, however, posits a sort of Greater Downtown Brooklyn, encompassing DUMBO, Brooklyn Heights, the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and Fort Greene, which are all marked.

There's no notation for Prospect Heights, but the map indicates the Barclays Center and extends to the eastern boundary of the Atlantic Yards site, to Vanderbilt Avenue.

City mandate: to Vanderbilt

Well, the notion of "Downtown Brooklyn" is a curious thing, as I recently discovered, thanks to a Freedom of Information Law request that revealed the 7/1/06 contract between the City of New York and the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership for "consulting services" to stimulate economic development, promote growth, coordinate services, and to assist in any area the Deputy Mayor and consultant "mutually agree on."

The contract defines the "Downtown Brooklyn Area" as extending south to Dean Street, east to Vanderbilt Avenue, and north to DeKalb Avenue, as shown in the screenshot below.

That has nothing to do with any definition of Downtown Brooklyn and seems clearly gerrymandered to encompass the emerging Atlantic Yards project. (And also, perhaps, extend the boundaries of Community Board 2, where presumably Forest City Ratner has more clout.) After all, the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, even in its expanded map, doesn't try to show the corner of Vanderbilt and DeKalb avenues.



Community Board 8 sends letter rejecting CB 2's Atlantic Yards map change; advocate Veconi suggests CB 8 expand to Atlantic/Flatbush boundary

Following up its vocal rejection of Community Board 2's plan to expand its borders to include the full Atlantic Yards footprint, Community Board 8 has sent a forceful letter (below) to Mayor Bill de Blasio, Borough President Eric Adams, and Council Member Laurie Cumbo reiterating its stance.

Given the need for consensus, it's unlikely that Community Board 2 can get its way. The question then becomes how this will be resolved.

One advocate suggests Community Board 8 should expand its borders to encompass the rest of the Atlantic Yards site between Flatbush and Atlantic avenues, leaving only one plot west of Flatbush, Site 5 (currently occupied by P.C. Richard and Modell's), for Community Board 6.

In a post on Patch, Prospect Heights Gib Veconi makes a strong argument for including Atlantic Yards in Community Board 8:
Given the challenges of integrating Atlantic Yards into a much less dense existing neighborhood, it would seem obvious that the residents of the Atlantic Yards high-rises should be in the same community board as their low-rise neighbors. The need to integrate also will be especially acute for those towers planned to be built along Vanderbilt Avenue, the “main street” of Prospect Heights. For these reasons, the CB2/CB8 border should be moved not further south to residential Dean Street, but north to Atlantic Avenue, an arterial road that is the natural division between Prospect Heights and Fort Greene.
While extending the CB 6 border east to Vanderbilt Avenue would restore coterminality with the 78th Precinct (expanded to enmpass the project) and "might represent a minor bureaucratic convenience," Veconi suggests it "would be a major disadvantage to consistent neighborhood policy" regarding plans for landmarking, liquor licenses, and traffic calming.

He concludes:
The current carve-outs on the north and west sides of district 8 can no longer be justified as being consistent with the intent of the Charter. And moving them further into Prospect Heights would lead to disenfranchisement of neighborhood residents and business owners. Economic, demographic and land use changes are coming too quickly in Prospect Heights to let that happen. Let’s hope that when the dust settles on this debate, our one community will finally get one Community Board.
Community Board 8 Letter on Atlantic Yards Boundaries, April 11, 2014

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

From Skanska, some curious (and questionable) Atlantic Yards plans: 8 buildings in 8 years, 4000 apartments, an 80-story tower (!); also, only 30 workers on site


Some rather astounding--and not necessarily accurate--information about plans for Atlantic Yards modular construction has been published by Forest City Ratner's construction partner Skanska in the 2014-15 Build Offsite Review produced by an industry organization in the United Kingdom that promotes modular construction.

For example, it says "the development plan is to construct eight buildings over a number of years to provide 4,000 apartments for mixed tenure occupation," as shown in the screenshot at right.

That's not the approved and promoted Atlantic Yards development program, however, which would involve 16 towers and 6,430 units, including 2,250 subsidized, affordable rentals.

Rather, 4000 apartments in eight buildings--500 units/building--would be a dramatically skewed conception of the project, front-loading a majority of units in the initial buildings, and leaving the final 2430 units to be built in the remaining eight buildings.

It doesn't quite make sense. The first tower, 32 stories, will hold 363 units, which implies that future towers would have to be much larger.

Then again, perhaps it's simply their conception of Phase 1, which involves buildings on the arena block, and buildings on the southeast block, Block 1129, ignoring the expensive deck over the Vanderbilt Yard. The development over the latter is supposed to cure the blight that was the justification for eminent domain.

It might reflect that fact that Forest City and its expected new partner, the Chinese government-owned Greenland Group, are not required to build the entire project. (I'll get to the requirements below.) Or maybe it's just an error.

Eight buildings in eight years?

How long will eight buildings take? We don't know, since modular construction is still being worked out and the first tower is behind schedule.

However, Robert Francis, Director, Innovation and Business Improvement at Skanska UK, suggested the eight buildings would take eight years, as a 2/3/14 presentation (excerpt below). 


This might put into perspective the statement last November from Chairman Zhang Yuliang of the Greenland Group, Forest City's expected joint venture partner in Atlantic Yards, that (in the Wall Street Journal's paraphrase) "he expected the development would take about eight years to complete." 

If so, maybe Zhang was talking about eight buildings--either the first phase of residential, or a significantly truncated project.

How many apartments required?

The joint venture by Forest City and Greenland, which the latter will control, is not required to build all the units, just the subsidized ones.

According to the Development Agreement (excerpt at left), they need only build a minimum of 4.47 million square feet, which sounds like significantly more than 4,000 apartments, given limited area for retail. Unless they build office space and/or a hotel.

They do need to build 2,250 affordable units. 

But it doesn't make sense that 4000 units would be the entire project, including 2250 affordable ones.

Even if every building were a 50/30/20 rental--and that's highly unlikely--they still couldn't build 2250 subsidized units in a total of only 4,000 apartments.

So maybe 4000 units is only the first phase, thus involving a smaller number of subsidy units.

Maybe there will be new subsidies, or revised agreements.

Or maybe Skanska was being very sloppy.

An 80-story tower?

B2 will be 322 feet, or about 32 stories. Other towers will be both taller and shorter.

But Skanska has made an astounding statement.

As noted in the second page of the excerpt from the Build Offsite Review, "Future phases of the development will rise 80 storeys with the innovative modular system capable of achieving 100 storeys."

Yowza.

That suggests a tower rising 800 feet--unless somehow the stories are Lilliputian.

That's not permitted, at least as of now.

Each Project building would also remain subject to the individual building height and individual building maximum floor area limits specified in Exhibit C to the 2009 Modified General Project Plan (the 2009 MGPP).
That document, at left, oddly sets 620 feet as the maximum building height for the tallest tower, B1, which would rise over the officially temporary plaza outside the arena.

However, Forest City Ratner agreed, upon project approval in December 2006, to lower that height to 511 feet, symbolically one foot shorter than the then-tallest building in Brooklyn, the Williamsburgh Savings Bank, now One Hanson Place.

That symbolic reduction would not keep the new tower from blocking the bank's iconic clock, however.

Perhaps that height limit is less meaningful now that there are even taller buildings in Downtown Brooklyn.

But the Final Scope does say:
As described in the 2009 Technical Memorandum, it is assumed that the height of Building 1 would be reduced from 620 feet (as analyzed in the 2006 FEIS) to 511 feet, so that this structure would be less than the height of the nearby Williamsburgh Savings Bank building. 
So maybe Skanska was talking smack. Or maybe everything can be revised. Could there be some plan, backed by the political establishment, to deliver an extra-tall tower in order to provide "affordable housing" faster?

Statistics: speed, cost savings, offsite work, onsite workers

The document claims that construction is 30 per cent faster than traditional construction, which may ultimately be the case, though it doesn't look like the first building will reach that goal.

It claims cost savings of only 10%, though the Draft SEIS suggests a 22% reduction.

It states that 80% of the building is completed offsite. Forest City has said 60% offsite.

And it states that only 30 people would be working on site at any one time. That's a very interesting number.

Consider that Forest City previously estimated 190 workers, including 150 workers at the factory. If the Skanska figure is correct, that's a total 180 workers. We already know compensation and hours are lower.


A "flying factory" could move

The document also notes:
The manufacturing facility was itself constructed in six months with the capability to be dismantled in 10 days and relocated to serve the next project. This is the ‘flying factory’ concept that Skanska has been developing.
There's obviously a value to having the factory in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Should Forest City and its partners decide that future projects would require having the factory closer to the development site--or, perhaps, simply in a cheaper location--that factory could fly away.

But it also suggests that Greenland, which is an ambitious, aggressive developer with cash to burn, may have some plans for that factory, using it in other projects.

Module total at B2 reaches 111, but tower still seems behind schedule for December opening

According to the most recent statistic from developer Forest City Ratner, in the latest two-week Construction Alert (below) approximately 111 modules had been delivered by the end of last week, an increase of 30 over the total after the previous two-week period.

That means they're still behind schedule, though the gap is recoverable.

The pace, 3 modules per day, represents a step up from the pace over the previous two weeks (2.2/day) and the two weeks before that (1.4/day). Still, they're well below full capacity, which is 80 (8 modules/day) over ten working days.

To finish the tower, which has approximately 930 modules, Forest City Ratner must deliver and install some 819 additional mods. At 8 modules/day, that could be accomplished in a little over 103 working days, or fewer than 21 five-day weeks. That would get the building finished by mid-September, well before the December 2014 target date.

At the most recent pace of 3 modules/day, however, it would take 273 working days, or nearly 55 weeks--more than a year--to finish the tower.

Need for more speed

To open the building by the end of 2014, let's assume they need all the modules by the first week in December (though that may give them too much slack).

That gives Forest City 170 working days, from yesterday, to deliver and install 819 additional modules. That suggests of 4.8 modules a day.

The pace has picked up in the last month, so the situation is clearly fluid. It would be premature to definitively say the building will be late.

But it's clearly behind, and that's part of a pattern. Last September, they nudged back the date to finish the building from the second to the fourth quarter of 2014.

The Summer 2014 completion date also appears in a 2/3/14 presentation by Robert Francis, Director, Innovation and Business Improvement at Skanska UK. (Skanska is Forest City Ratner's partner on FCS Modular.)

Also see some questionable statistics from Skanska regarding the project.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Look beyond that green arena roof. A bigger issue for Atlantic Yards is the cost of capital.

Keep your eye on the ball, people.

Sure, that green roof on the Barclays Center sounds interesting, though most news outlets downplayed the effort to limit noise escaping from the arena, disregarded the history of promises regarding the roof (it was once supposed to be park-like space open to the public), and ignored how the plans for construction evade any environmental review.

The much bigger story involves saving money.

As Forest City Enterprises CFO Bob O’Brien told investment analysts in September 2010, “At the end of the day, it’s all about the cost of the capital. And if we can do it at a reasonable, affordable cost, we’ll do so."

Similarly, in an October 2007, then Forest City Ratner president Joanne Minieri told the Wall Street Journal, "Value creation is impacted tremendously when you have to pay more for financing proceeds."

Lowering the cost of capital

So Forest City, like other developers, has figured out a way to lower the cost of capital.

They're about to raise $249 million in cheap capital thanks to the federal government's loosely regulated EB-5 program, in which developers and entrepreneurs get to trade green cards in exchange for low-cost capital and purportedly job-creating investments.

New York-based attorney Yi Song reported 4/7/14 on the LexisNexis Venture Capital blog that the pending deal with the Greenland Group helped "the 498-investor EB-5 project, Atlantic Yards II in New York City [become] fully subscribed in under three months." Apparently the deceptive promotion worked well.

In other words, even though the deal with the Chinese government-owned holding company to buy 70% of the project going forward has not been fully approved, the big Chinese investor apparently helped give individual millionaires the confidence to park their money in "Atlantic Yards II" in exchange for green cards.

How much will the partneres save? We don't know the fees, or the interest rates, but it's safe to say the number is in the tens of millions of dollars, or more than $100 million.

So the question arises: what's next? In what other ways are they figuring to save?

Why does Forest City (with partners) continue misleading EB-5 promotion? Well, they got away with it the first time

Forest City Ratner and its anticipated Chinese partner stand to save tens of millions of dollars--maybe more--from $249 million in cheap capital raised through immigrant investors, but only if their clearly deceptive pitch to those investors gets a pass from federal regulators.

That was obviously a calculated risk, because, in 2010, even more clearly deceptive tactics got a pass. Forest City Ratner raised $228 million (the original goal was $249 million) from investors who prized getting green cards over a significant return on their investment, which they'd park for five to seven years.

(The justification for the federal EB-5 program is that the investments create jobs, but indirect/induced jobs can be counted and, in the case of Atlantic Yards, the project would go ahead without that investment. It merely lowered Forest City's cost of capital and, astoundingly, is considered kosher.)

Proof on video

"Can you tell us about the advantage of this problems, and what difference from other projects?" Gregg Hayden, a representative of the New York City Regional Center (NYCRC), representing the deal, was asked on a webcast in 2010.

"The first major advantage is that the approval process, from USCIS [United States Citizenship and Immigration Services], having already been accomplished, takes all of the immigration risk out of the process for the EB-5 investor," Hayden responded, as shown below. (Emphasis added)



I asked the USCIS if acceptance of the regional center's application meant a specific project "has been completely pre-approved by USCIS" or that the immigration risk had been eliminated.

The answer was no.

USCIS spokeswoman Luz Irazabal told me at the time: “When we approve a regional center, or we approve an amendment to it, if it’s specific to that regional center, it does not mean that the petitions that are going to be filed have been pre-approved."

Can a project be “completely pre-approved by USCIS?" I asked, quoting Hayden's language.

Irazabal cautioned that she could not comment on specific projects, but responded, “USCIS either approves or denies a benefit. You’re either a U.S. citizen or you’re not. We don’t pre-adjudicate benefits.

As it happened, the first round of EB-5 investors have sailed through. So it was a calculated risk.

Boilerplate warning

The following passage appeared in the confidential offering memoranda for two previous NYCRC projects, regarding the Brooklyn Navy Yard and Steiner Studios:


Presumably, such boilerplate also appeared in the memorandum for the Brooklyn Arena and Infrastructure Project, so, despite Hayden's language, the project promoters had an out.

Misleading promotion

Most of the promotion took place in China, but Reuters reported that an agent for the Kookmin Migration Consulting Co., working on behalf of the NYCRC in Korea, "told would-be investors if they invested in the company's latest project their permanent green cards were 'guaranteed' and implied investors would be financing a new arena."

George Olsen, NYCRC managing principal, acknowledged to Reuters that the claims were "not accurate," but blamed his affiliate. 

Actually, as shown in the video, the NYCRC's own man in China made such claims.

Documentation, as shown in the brochure at right, suggested that not only was the arena the centerpiece, the city, state, and National Basketball Association were involved.

They got away with it.


The EB-5 program is already dubious, because it essentially gives permission for developers and entrepreneurs valuable public property (a limited amount of green cards) to market in exchange for investments that benefit them predominantly.

It's unsurprising that such a lucrative opportunity tempts project promoters into stretching the truth to make their projects stand out in a very competitive overseas market.

But that's where regulation--and some skeptical reporting--should come in. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Photo: B2 rises at Flatbush and Dean, while Bergen Tile building across the street is demolished

I took the below photo of the intersection of Flatbush Avenue and Dean Street on April 3. Note the demolition in the foreground of the Bergen Tile building, which will be replaced by a mid-rise residential building.

(Some of the dump trucks and other disruption on the street are a result of this demolition, not anything to do with Atlantic Yards.)

Then see the gradual  rising of B2, the first Atlantic Yards residential tower, flush against the Barclays Center. Once the 322-foot building starts poking above the height of the arena, which is about 140 feet, it will become a lot more noticeable. For now, though, it's been going slowly.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

"Keeping your word means something in Brooklyn"? It's Orwellian how columnist Hamill misremembers Ratner's ticket promises

The Brooklyn Nets, astoundingly, have a legitimate shot to win a championship or, at least, a few rounds in the playoffs. After all they swept the champion Miami Heat this year and have a deep, if old, team that might thrive in a series where there are no back-to-back games.

So that led sycophantic Daily News columnist Denis Hamill this week to make the obvious, and unimpeachable, point that, should the team win, they should have their parade in Brooklyn:
Forget the Canyon of Heroes.
Brooklyn should parade in Brooklyn.
We’re jumping way out in front of ourselves here, but if all the planets line up over Kings County and the Brooklyn Nets win the NBA championship, they should have a victory parade in the footsteps of the 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers from Brooklyn Borough Hall over to Flatbush Ave.
They should march straight up the spine of Brooklyn to where Flatbush Ave. meets Atlantic Ave. and to Barclays Center, home of the Brooklyn Nets.
And there the dancin’ in the Brooklyn streets should begin.
OK. Still, for various reasons, people around Brooklyn don't care about the Nets the way Brooklyn of the 1940s and 1950s cared about the Dodgers. But he got Borough President Eric Adams and Mayor Bill de Blasio to endorse the low-risk notion of a Brooklyn parade.

Those $15 seats

Hamill, who now lives in Queens, feels a shiver of pride that has apparently also translated into amnesia:
When the arena was being built, I asked owner Bruce Ratner how much cheap Nets seats would cost. He said $15. Back in February I went with my family to see the Nets vs. New Orleans at Barclays and bought five nosebleed tickets at the box office for $75. 
Keeping your word means something in Brooklyn.
It's Orwellian, almost.

Actually, that's not close to "keeping your word." In his 8/1/12 column, Hamill quoted Ratner, "There will be 2,000 $15 seats at every Brooklyn Nets game, and 50% of Nets tickets will be $55 or less."

That lasted exactly one season. The base price for tickets in the second season (except for limited group tickets) rose to $25--"we are a business," said CEO Brett Yormark. Still, for various games, including apparently the one Hamill attended, prices indeed go down to $15. They've even gone to $8.

As for "keeping your word," well, how about that ten-year Atlantic Yards timetable and the rest of the Culture of Cheating?

Friday, April 11, 2014

Community Board 8 expresses strong opposition to CB 2's attempt to encompass Atlantic Yards, seeks "mutually acceptable plan" with three CBs

CB 2 at top. CB 6 at left, CB 8 lower right. Inset east of
6th Ave. below arena drawn to put 78th Precinct in CB 6
As predicted, Community Board 2's unilateral vote Wednesday to support redrawing district boundaries to encompass the entire Atlantic Yards site did not sit well with neighboring Community Board 8, which last night expressed strong opposition to the plan.

Rob Witherwax, the board's second vice-chair, presented the issue at the request of Chair Nizjoni Granville, who'd said "I can't be calm when I think about it."

"I'm sure you've all been following on the news this one political entity that wants to take some territory from another political entity," Witherwax said a bit archly at the meeting, held at the Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation on Classon Avenue. "I could be talking about Russia, and Ukraine. But I'm actually talking about Community Board 2 and Community Board 8."

(Note that he said this "a bit archly," a key shading missed by the DNAinfo borrowing of my coverage.)

CB 8 statement

He read a statement from the Executive Committee (as delivered):
"1. CB 8 rejects CB 2's attempt to assume the entirety of the Atlantic Yards footprint without consultation with the other involved boards
2. CB 8 rejects any realignment of district boundaries that will split Prospect Heights in half, such as what would occur if those boundaries were redrawn to be coterminous with the 78th Precinct, and
3. CB 8 is willing--and has been willing since this arose in August--to meet with CB 2 and CB 6 to develop a mutually acceptable plan to redraw district boundaries around Atlantic Yards in a way that protects the surrounding communities (the bulk of which of live in CB 8), enhances the effective delivery of services to the footprint (including the construction, which we all going to live with...), and takes into consideration the footprint as it now exists and as it may someday be built."
The executive committee will meet next week to talk about the process, but even without a formal vote, everyone in the room seemed to be on board. The few suggestions were to make the statement stronger.

"We're not going to sit back and allow this board to be eviscerated in any way," declared Dr. Fred Monderson.

Background discussion

Every ten years, the mayor has the power to consider changes in population and redraw district lines to adjust service delivery, Witherwax said in response to a question. "Community districts are supposed to respect the historic, geographic, and identifiable communities in the city, which is why dividing Prospect Heights in half, merely because the 78th Precinct happens to have half, is a non-starter." 

The mayor is supposed to bring a new map to the City Council by May, after presumed consultation with affected parties. 

(Co-terminality would suggest that, to align the 78th Precinct with the main territory it serves--including Atlantic Yards and the two adjacent malls added to the precinct boundaries in 2012-- Atlantic Yards would be placed in CB 6. That board hasn't weighed in, but presumably would not welcome CB 2's action.)

"How did we come to learn about this?" Witherwax reflected. "This started last summer. Some individuals in CB 2 started the discussion and said, We need to come up with a plan that's mutually agreeable. I give them credit for starting that discussion. They lost interest, didn't want to pursue it, and neither did CB 6. And though we had come up with some good ideas, we dropped it too."

"Then, last week, out of nowhere, the CB 2 Executive Committee" voted to include the entire footprint, Witherwax said, "including a block that's not even in the footprint," including the Newswalk building between Dean and Pacific streets and Carlton and Vanderbilt avenues. (Actually, they didn't set a specific boundary, though it would be logical to set a straight line on Dean and thus include Block 1128.)

"That's not a good neighbor," he said of the CB 2's motion the previous night.

"Is their board president Mr. Putin?" one board member quipped, to laugher. (Actually, board Chair Shirley McRae opposed the motion.)

What's next?

The executive committee will meet and make a formal presentation to the full board in May, Granville said.

"I don't want to assume, but I really don't think out of 54 board members, anyone would be in favor of Atlantic Yards going to another community board," she added.

"Of course," shot back one board member.

"Not after all we've been through," Granville continued.

"And 25 more years," added Wayne Bailey, a resident of Newswalk active in Atlantic Yards Watch, indicating the outside date for finishing the project. (Actually, it's 21 more years, since the 25-year clock began in 2010.) It's also possible everything will speed up, which could pose its own challenges.

Rock hall induction ceremony comes to Barclays Center; mixed response on enforcement of illegal parking

On Atlantic Avenue
Last night, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame held its induction ceremony at the Barclays Center, and a good time was had by all--inside.

Outside, it was a little more complicated.

As noted in a post on Atlantic Yards Watch, there was copious illegal parking and standing around the arena, on Atlantic Avenue west of Sixth Avenue, on Sixth Avenue between Pacific and Dean Streets, and across from 486 Dean Street.

The poster asked a cop in a buggy "if she would ticket these cars, her answer was no, because there is a special event!" -

It was also special for the vehicles, apparently. One boasted a dashboard sign, "Show Talent." Another had a license plate holder indicating "Active Member Fraternal order of Police."

Note this response:
The police detail on Atlantic Avenue told me that much of the parking of limos and TV production vehicles was authorized and permitted and planned. This may include the vechicles in the complaints above.

This should be checked out at the next QOL [Quality of Life] meeting or PCC [Precinct Community Council]; I would suggest that the person posting this ask the community affairs officers, such as Officer Laffey, for clarification prior to those meetings and then we can ask for better communication in the future. We can also explore the nature of the public accommodation for this kind of event, which seems more like a movie shoot than a typical arena event.
Farther away from the arena

On Sixth Avenue
There seemed to be a better response farther away from the arena. At 8:45 pm, one poster indicated that enforcement had stepped up on Fifth Avenue between Dean and Bergen Streets:
First off, it was a great relief to see a Traffic Enforcement car pull up to a bunch of illegally parked and idling cars on Bergen just as I arrived. The officers either had drivers move or ticketed cars, about six in all, including a black stretch in the bus stop at 429 Bergen and several in the No Standing zone by 5th AVe. Kudos! Also, a regular NYPD officer from the squad car standing with flashers at 5th Ave and Dean noticed (with me) a limo in the bus stop there and asked him to move. Officer (from 67th Pct) expressed concern about difficult parking here.
Later on, however, the problem recurred:
between about 9:30 and 10:30 gave about ten leads on illegal parkers to Traffic Enforcement. Noted that some idling limos at fire hydrants have been there all night. It is illegal to stand at a fire hydrant after sundown. And it illegal to idle.
It's not clear whether there was follow-up.