Wednesday, March 07, 2007

ESDC's Foye gets up to speed on Atlantic Yards

Patrick Foye, Governor Eliot Spitzer's appointee as Downstate Chairman of the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC), is getting up to speed on Atlantic Yards. First, he heard last week from the Fifth Avenue Committee's Michelle de la Uz, representing BrooklynSpeaks, about "urgent concerns" regarding oversight of project construction.

On March 22, as the New York Observer reported, Foye will visit the Atlantic Yards site, at the request of City Council Member Letitia James.

AY on DVD

And Foye has already seen a copy of Isabel Hill's documentary Brooklyn Matters, sent to him by three former City Planning Commissioners: Ron Shiffman (on the Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn advisory board), Stuart Pertz (an advisor to BrooklynSpeaks), and Marilyn Gelber. The trio urged the ESDC to take a second look at the project, warning that the project "leaves us with a legacy of lawsuits which can damage future opportunities for growth."

In his response, Foye thanked the three, responding that the ESDC was analyzing the project approved by the Public Authorities Control Board, and that a thorough examination of the project's environmental, financial, and fiscal impacts was proceeding before funds are released.

Does that mean that the Spitzer-era ESDC could wring changes in the project? Unclear--but stay tuned.

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