Monday, April 18, 2011

When it comes to Wal-Mart plans, Lewis (ex-ACORN) decries linkage between store and affordable housing; what about the arena linkage?

From an article in City Hall News headlined Critics Accuse Developers Of Obfuscating Plans To Bring Wal-Mart To NYC:
In a letter addressed to Related Companies CEO Stephen Ross, Wal-Mart critics accused the real estate developer and their allies of knowingly spreading falsehoods about the benefit of siting the big box store. Related is the organization widely believed to be in negotiations to bring Wal-Mart to East New York in Brooklyn.

The charge stems from a recent Housing Preservation and Development hearing, which dealt with the transfer of city-owned Gateway Commercial land to Related. According to Bertha Lewis, former head of the now-defunct ACORN who co-authored the letter, a lawyer representing Related conflated the transfer of land for mall construction with affordable housing.

...“Good people can disagree, but be transparent and honest,” said Ms. Lewis in reference to Related. “If you are negotiating to bring a Wal-Mart to Gateway II, say that. Don’t say that it’s about housing.”
Well, a not dissimilar kind of conflation occurred 3/11/10, when Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Forest City Ratner/Barclays issued press releases touting the ceremonial arena groundbreaking, promising it would bring affordable housing in its wake.

It hasn't. It's been delayed, as Forest City Ratner considers the radical, cost-cutting step of modular construction.

2 comments:

  1. I guess Bertha hasn't gotten her check from Related yet.

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  2. ACORN was obligated to publicly support Atlantic Yards, according to the 2005 Housing Memorandum of Understanding, and later received a $1.5 million grant/loan from Forest City Ratner, the latter of which was not paid back when ACORN filed for bankruptcy.

    ReplyDelete