Thursday, September 20, 2012

Morning round-up: NY1 on Battle for Brooklyn; Daily News' cramped view of protests; columnist Hamill plays reliable tune (and gets front page!); Post takes odd swipe at arena's lack of Barclays ATMs

NY1, in its weeklong series, finally gives the "other side," in Brooklyn Holds Court: New Documentary Outlines Controversy Surrounding Barclays Project:
Michael Galinsky, the director of "Battle for Brooklyn," wants to make sure that no one forgets just how the Barclays Center took center court.

"I love basketball," Galinsky says. "I'm a huge basketball fan. I don't think it negates the fact, though, that the process was really ugly and corrupt."

The film follows Brooklynite Daniel Goldstein's fight against developer Bruce Ratner, whose eventual use of eminent domain cleared the way for the arena, the cornerstone of his Atlantic Yards project. Towards the end of the more-than-eight-year process, Goldstein's condo is among the private properties seized for the project.
The columnist weighs in

New York Daily News columnist Denis Hamill, professional Brooklyn nostalgist and Queens resident, reliably pens Brooklyn's Barclays Center is a rallying cry for borough that has been absent of a major sports team since Dodgers left town in 1957:
This rising tide will float all boats.
Which is why the NYC Independent Budget Office concluded that the arena would be a net loss for city taxpayers.

He writes:
But mostly, I think how lucky the kids of Brooklyn will be not to have to catch an F train to Times Square and then change to a 7 to go root for the Mets of Flushing, Queens. Or take the train all the way uptown into the distant Bronx on the mainland of the United States to cheer for the pinstriped Yankees.
How lucky they’ll be not to have to travel to Manhattan to see the Knicks or the Rangers or the Golden Gloves finals at Madison Square Garden.
What fantasy world does he live in? For most events, there will be few tickets available that are affordable to most "kids of Brooklyn."

Check out the cover. Hamill's description is:
It was an under-developed section of prime Brooklyn in the shadow of the Williamsburgh Savings Bank building, then the borough’s tallest, and the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Flatbush and Atlantic, once a place where hookers strolled, will now become the Hollywood and Vine of Brooklyn as borough native Jay-Z opens the arena with eight sold-out shows that begin Sept. 28.
A place where hookers strolled. Yeah, a while back. Also a "great piece of real estate," as Forest City Enterprises Chuck Ratner once said--and they got it with no competition for the full site and only one bidder responding to the belated RFP for the Vanderbilt Yard.

Of course Hamill doesn't care about the Culture of Cheating.

Cramped view of protests

The New York Daily News, in Last man standing in the way of Barclays Center plan to picket ceremonial ribbon cutting, writes:
The big shots will be congratulating each other when Brooklyn’s new Barclays Center opens Friday, but some of the little guys will be jeering.
Daniel Goldstein and members of his anti-Atlantic Yards group Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn plan to picket the ceremonial ribbon-cutting — and let mega-developer Bruce Ratner know they are not going away.
“We intend to remind people that Ratner . . . has yet to make good on promises he made to provide good jobs and cheap apartments when he got the go-ahead to build the arena,” he said.
The article does not mention the other groups sponsoring the demonstration: Families United for Racial and Economic Equality, Brown Community Development Corporation, BrooklynSpeaks, Fifth Avenue Committee.

Note that the Daily News is using photos of the arena shot from several floors up, thus softening the impact of the building from a street-level view.
Aaron Showalter for the New York Daily News
Naming rights and ATMs

The New York Post, in Banking airball: Barclays has no game despite its $400M arena deal, suggests it's a problem that there will be no Barclays ATMs at the Barclays Center arena.

I think that's the least of their problems; there's that LIBOR scandal they'll be trying to live down for a while. And it's not a $400 million naming-rights deal; the sum was cut to $200 million plus unspecified additional payments.

More LIRR trains

Reports the Long Island Press, in LIRR Adding Trains for Barclays Center in Brooklyn:
The Long Island Rail Road is adding late-night trains from the Atlantic Terminal in Brooklyn to accommodate an influx of riders expected upon next week’s debut of the Barclays Center.
Eastbound trains will run nearly an hour later than normal on the Hempstead and Far Rockaway lines starting Friday, Sept. 28—timed to coincide with the first of eight sold-out Jay-Z concerts at the 18,000-seat arena across the street from the LIRR terminal on Flatbush Avenue.
Riders on the nine other LIRR lines will have to transfer at Jamaica. Drivers are urged to take the LIRR since parking is limited in the area.
...The last LIRR train out of Brooklyn is usually at 11:55 p.m. on weekends and weekdays. Trains will run through 12:41 a.m. when there are special events or concerts at the center.
New speed bumps in neighborhoods near arena

Patch reports, in City Counting on Speed Bumps to Slow Barclays Center Traffic, that there will be
The speed bumps will be placed on Ashland Place between Lafayette Avenue and Hanson Place, Carlton Avenue between Fulton Street and Atlantic Avenue and Clinton Avenue between Fulton Street and Atlantic Avenue, as well as in several streets in Park Slope and Prospect Heights, including Plaza Street West, Prospect Place, and Sterling Place.

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