Saturday, August 15, 2015

Patti Hagan on today's block party: "traffic-endangering co-opting of once-public Dean St. by private OverDevelopers continues apace"

OK, not everyone's thrilled with the corporate-sponsored, artist-heavy block party today on Dean Street between Carlton and Vanderbilt avenue.

Yesterday, cordial critics in the Barclays Center Impact Zone Alliance called for improving construction oversight.

Then there's Atlantic Yards uber-opponent Patti Hagan, who upon receiving a boilerplate promotional announcement via her block association--"Join Greenland Forest City Partners, multimedia artist Mike Perry and ten of Brooklyn's visionary artists as they embark on creating 10 colorful murals in one day and celebrate Pacific Park Arts"--responded with the following message:
Dear St. Marks Ave./Prospect Heights Neighbors:
August 15th I would hope we will all simply boycott Ratner's phony "Block Party on Dean St." (NOT A DEAN ST. BLOCK PARTY.) Has nothing to do with the Dean St. Block Association" or the Prospect Heights community -- which Ratner+NYC/NYS gov. have done so much to destroy since July 2003.)

Instead of moving out of the middle of Dean St. the detested 820 ft.X16 ft. Great Green Wall [so-called "Construction Fence"] (safeguarding upcoming non-modular luxury condos that should help solve the housing crisis for rich Chinese desperate to park their millions outside the Middle Kingdom) minority partner Ratner & his Shanghai bosses will hire what they term "visionary artists" to paint the traffic-endangering 16 ft. Wall, pre-proclaiming the result "Works of Art enlivening the neighborhood!" (Brooklyn's own immovable Great Wall.) 
Alas, celebrated Dean St. artists (& Ratlantic Yards critics) such as Peter Krashes, Oliver Herring, Jimmy Greenfield & Tracy Collins will be condemned to look at Ratner's latest Marketing Ploy for years to come. The traffic-endangering co-opting of once-public Dean St. by private OverDevelopers continues apace. Nothing artistic about it. But of course, in Progressive eminent domain abusive NYC the streets don't belong to the people, much less their historic houses & the century-old architectural beauty, the Ward Bread Bakery.
Please BOYCOTT! 
Thanks,
Patti Hagan
(Emphases in original)

Some local involvement

Note that Jimmy Greenfield's Soapbox Gallery--which has displayed art critical of Atlantic Yards, such as Tracy Collins's photos--is participating in the block party.

Note that, while the block party certainly doesn't spring organically from the Prospect Heights community--local community groups are not co-sponsors--several local businesses are involved.

I suspect they have multiple reasons, including the role of sponsorships, and friendly/cordial/inevitable feelings toward the project or at least future customers.

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