Thursday, October 06, 2011

Ratner hires advertising agency. Agency CEO calls him "our generation's Robert Moses."

Stoute's Plan to Market the Nets? Kissing Up to Brooklyn: Translation CEO on Borough Pride, City Rivalry and Bruce Ratner as a Modern-Day Robert Moses, in Ad Age:
Nets officials have been busy hyping Brooklyn as an iconic globally-recognized brand. Translation Founder-CEO Steve Stoute, whose agency is handling marketing for the team, said the New York City borough is marketing gold. "The power of the Brooklyn brand is so resounding. It means so many things: hard work, gentrification and diversity, music, culture." And while there are still critics upset over the use of eminent domain to make way for the Barclays Center where the team will play, Mr. Stoute said Brooklyn residents should "be ecstatic" about the move.
The controversy
Ad Age: Another factor in all this is that the Atlantic Yards project has been steeped in controversy. What will you say to win the neighborhood over?

Mr. Stoute: I think that there's always going to be people who resist change. It's a human reality. I look at what they had to go through and say it wasn't easy, but it made sense. It was there to improve, to uplift, to contemporize, to bring back sports to the borough. It's the Barclays Center of Brooklyn. It's of the people. This is Bruce Ratner's gift to them. He is our generation's Robert Moses.
My comment
Mr. Stoute may be an able adman, but "Our generation's Robert Moses"? Wow.

Moses is steeped in controversy, but what he built--roads, parks, pools--aimed at the public interest. Bruce Ratner's job is to build projects and make a profit.

"Bruce Ratner's gift to them"? Wow, again. Maybe that would be closer to fact had Ratner paid his own way, but if you add the public subsidies and tax breaks, the arena is a loss to NYC taxpayers, according to the NYC Independent Budget Office.

By the way, it's "eminent domain," not "imminent domain." Thanks to New York State's very flexible definitions of "blight," Ratner was able to get the state to declare a gentrifying zone blighted as a precursor to eminent domain. His cousin Chuck Ratner, then-CEO of parent Forest City Enterprises, called it a "great piece of real estate."

Norman Oder
Atlantic Yards Report
AtlanticYardsReport.com
They corrected "imminent domain" to "eminent domain."

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