Saturday, October 01, 2011

On CNN Money, Ratner tours/touts arena, makes unfounded claim about winning "37 lawsuits," claims Barclays "stuck with us"

In a video posted yesterday, Tour the new Nets arena with Bruce Ratner, CNN Money offers publicity to an arena a year away from completion.

Ratner offers two reasons for the long path. "There were a lot of litigation. some people unhappy, it's a democracy, it's our country, entitled. We won 37 lawsuits." (At the groundbreaking in March 2010, Ratner claimed "34 lawsuits.")

How can he say that with a straight face? The number of lawsuits was about ten--maybe there were a bunch more decisions on motions. Ratner and the state, notably lost the last decision--which will be appealed--which combines two lawsuits..


The economy

More important to the delays, he said, was "the Great Recession... We were just about to get the financing when the world fell apart, and we had to re-do everything."

That would include not just dropping Frank Gehry's design but reopening settled deals with two state agencies, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Empire State Development Corporation.

A Barclays question

"Can you talk a little more about the partnership with Barclays?" he was asked.

"First of all, they've been amazing partners--they've stuck with us," Ratner stated. Actually, Barclays renegotiated the naming rights agreement twice and the official figure was cut in half.

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