Saturday, September 25, 2010

In Time Out New York, some curious agnosticism about arena impact, but no love from Prospect Height interviewees

From Time Out New York's Neighborhood Guides: Prospect Heights

In recent years, Prospect Heights has experienced a boom: Vanderbilt Avenue, the area’s main thoroughfare, is a thriving business district, with fancy cocktail bars, restaurants and several speciality stores, including a custom-bike shop and a bookstore. The Brooklyn Museum and the Brooklyn Public Library are also within walking distance, adding to the draw. But the invasion of the Atlantic Yards development, which is finally underway, could change all of that. There’s no telling whether the new basketball stadium will have a positive or negative effect on the neighborhood.

No telling? There's going to be a massive surface parking lot on the block bounded by Dean and Pacific streets and Carlton and Vanderbilt avenues, and the users of that lot will walk to the arena along the narrow sidewalks of residential Dean Street, as I described in June.

Some dismay

Some interviewed by Time Out are dismayed:

Ellen Fishman, co-owner, Amorina Cucina Rustica and Aliseo Osteria del Borgo:

“I think Atlantic Yards will affect the community, there’s no question. I don’t think that we’ll get business, necessarily, from people going to the stadium. It’s very likely that people will drive or take the train to the stadium, stay in that area, and leave. It may not siphon off business in that sense. We’re also concerned that a lot of the neighborhood is just going to turn into a parking lot."

Rick Moody, author, The Ice Storm:

"Partly because of the experience of watching that fucking basketball thing happen, my cynical attitude is that money and power wins every time. It doesn’t matter what the people in the neighborhood actually want, the developers win every time. It’s irritating and it makes me feel slightly hopeless."

As NLG's Eric McClure pointed out, Moody is a member of Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn's Advisory Board.

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