Tuesday, April 26, 2016

State says "incident should not have occurred," but no penalties; continued incursions met by lack of enforcement

I got a response yesterday from Empire State Development, the state authority overseeing/shepherding Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park, regarding the incident last Friday in which workers unloaded a truck outside his house a block away from the project, blocking traffic, pedestrians, and a bike lane:
“No contractor is allowed to unload anywhere but at the site, and this incident should not have occurred. We have reinforced to the developer to abide by the regulations of the truck protocols and all other site-related guidelines and made it clear that all deliveries must be made to the project site and never unloaded on neighboring streets.”
But my follow-up question--are there any sanctions?--went unanswered.

As I said on the Daily News podcast on Friday, at this point apologies and pledges are insufficient; such incursions must be met by sanctions that offset the advantage the developer gets by inflicting impacts on the community.

Trick waiting to get into loading dock
This was by no means an isolated incident.

More enforcement issues

This past Saturday night, 4/23/16, when Bruce Springsteen played the Barclays Center, a reader was forced to wait in a taxi at the corner of Flatbush Avenue and Dean Street for more than seven minutes.

The cab blocked a lane of Flatbush traffic because a truck, awaiting entry into the arena loading dock on Dean, blocked that single lane on Dean, cascading backups on Dean and Flatbush.

"There were zero traffic enforcement, NYPD or others there to resolve the issues so that everyone behind the truck just had to wait," the reader wrote. See photo at left.

Beyond that, black SUVs were parked on Dean in a No Standing zone, with no enforcement. See photo below right.

This has become standard operating procedures regarding arena operations.

SUV on Dean Street
The New York Police Department does not seem to have the will or the manpower to enforce the law, concluding, from what I can tell from comments at public meetings, that crime fighting is a priority given limited resources. (The 78th Precinct Community Council meets tonight.)


So, as I said on the podcast, blame goes to the mayor and governor for not making this a priority and for tacitly allowing arena operations to impact the immediate neighborhood.

Further down Dean Street

In another example, a 9 am incident on Friday 4/22/16 posted on Atlantic Yards Watch, a truck spent four to five minutes backing up and out of the Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park site on Dean Street between Carlton and Vanderbilt avenues.

That created "all sorts of traffic issues on Dean and Carlton."  There have been no announced sanctions.

Truck backing out of project site on Dean Street

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