Friday, February 13, 2009

Gramercy loan extended for Ratner; "some" state officials skeptical of stimulus funds for AY

The big news in this afternoon's New York Times City Room post, headlined Atlantic Yards Project Gets a Reprieve is that the developer got an extension on a loan.

The Times reports:
Forest City’s loan of $177 million from Gramercy Capital Corporation for the 22-acre property was due this month, which caused much speculation in political and real estate circles about the fate of the project.

According to executives familiar with the negotiations, Forest City will sign an agreement soon as today in which the company will make a $15 million payment immediately, as well as additional large payments in the future, in return for a two-year extension.


While I initially didn't make a prediction, it's not that surprising to me that Gramercy, which loaned Forest City Ratner money to buy property within the AY footprint, negotiated an extension; the prospect of owning certain buildings on the site could not have been attractive.

And Gramercy did get some cash. Its stock is barely $1, down from a 52-week high of $22.90.

"Some" opposition to stimulus

Perhaps more important news appeared lower down in the article:
In recent weeks, Mr. Ratner has sought to slash the arena’s cost and to get more subsidies from the city, the state and even New York’s portion of the recently approved federal stimulus package, beyond the $300 million in cash and tens of millions in tax breaks already committed to the project. Former Senator Alfonse M. D’Amato’s firm, Park Strategies, has been lobbying on behalf of Forest City to get federal money for infrastructure projects. But some state officials say that Atlantic Yards is unlikely to get that money, since other needs are more pressing.
(Emphasis added)

That's an interesting locution. It wasn't "some state officials say they don't think Atlantic Yards should get that money;" rather, it was "say that Atlantic Yards is unlikely..."

That suggests that those quoted aren't local elected officials spouting off but rather insiders with some say.

4 comments:

  1. looks like a death spiral to me.

    high flying capital firm makes large loan for "publicly backed" project.

    economy tanks. so does public backing.

    capital firm at 5% of year ago takes any cash($15,000,000 out of $177,000,000) it can get in hopes of not having to make capital call on partners.

    capital firm rewrites mortgage in hope of getting out from under.

    looks like ratner played a good poker hand. scared them into rewriting.

    this is starting to get interesting. time to follow the money.

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  2. No, no, no. The real story here is that once again, you've had one of your straw men shuffled off the stage.

    Yet again, your overheated rhetoric about how this or that impediment stands in the way of the project has been shown to be vaporous.

    No tax-exempt bonds, no housing subsidies, no this, no that...every single one of them has been shown to be wrong.

    So now Gramercy extends the loan. WOW...or perhaps...DUH.

    Next up, I see, is the limited chance for any of the stimulus money to wind up helping the project.

    At what point do you admit that so much of what you write is simply a collection of straw men?

    You are very naive. The city wants this to get done. The state wants this to get done, and when only SIXTY people show up at a meeting (if indeed that was the number) to howl about a $4 billion project, doesn't THAT tell you something about the waning interest?

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  3. Bobbo's not spent much time in Brooklyn. 60 people showed up last year too. They weren't "howling;" they were trying to get some answers.

    A lot more came to "Brooklyn Day," but that's cause there were freebies.

    The real story is why the developer and the state won't answer questions.

    And why liberal Bruce Ratner has to hire right-wing Al D'Amato to pursue influence.

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  4. Bobbo should sign his name as Bob Windrem.

    ReplyDelete