Thursday, July 10, 2008

"Brooklyn is happening"? Nets brass now promise 2010-11 season

From NetsDaily yesterday:
The Nets’ VIP Access officials held a reception for about 40 season ticket-holders Tuesday night at the Barclays Center showroom in midtown Manhattan, assuring them that “Brooklyn is happening” in spite of various reports.

Well, it's fair to say that, given the U.S. Supreme Court's refusal to take the Atlantic Yards eminent domain appeal, the project is somewhat more likely to happen than, say, a few months ago. But two--possibly three--lawsuits remain and the availability of tax-exempt bonds for the arena remains very much in question.

So "Brooklyn is happening" sounds more like a pitch for suite sales than a solemn promise.

Now it's the 2010-11 season

NetsDaily also reported:
Officials added that the team still “anticipates” playing in the Barclays Center during the 2010-11 season and expects to have an official ground-breaking at the site later this year.

Less than two months ago, Forest City Ratner promised an opening during the 2010 calendar year. So team officials continue to hedge. Given the three-year bridge reconstruction schedule, 2011 still looks to me like a reasonable best-case scenario.

As for a groundbreaking later this year, well, it's possible that a symbolic groundbreaking could be held--for example, at the Vanderbilt Yard.

But it's hardly certain that, by the end of the year, either the developer will have bought out remaining footprint tenants/landowners or the Empire State Development Corporation will have completed eminent domain proceedings.

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