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Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park graphic: what's built/what might be coming (post-dated pinned post)

Click on graphic to enlarge. This is post-dated to stay at the top of the blog. It will be updated as announced configurations change and buildings launch. The August 2014 tentative configurations proposed by developer Greenland Forest City Partners will change, and the project is already well behind that tentative timetable.

No update on construction timetable; developer admits B15 site "disgusting," cites partial progress

OK, the hole in the sidewalk outside the B15 site was fixed recently, but weeds, garbage, and rats persist just east of Sixth Avenue between Dean and Pacific streets, given an indifferently maintained, long-stalled site.

After complaints from neighbors last night at the bi-monthly Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park Quality of Life meeting, even Ashley Cotton, Forest City New York's External Affairs EVP, acknowledged "you’re right, it’s disgusting" and announced partial progress.

Because the joint venture Greenland Forest City Partners is still negotiating with a site neighbor about construction protections--the issue in a lawsuit from another neighbor, which was resolved--"we’re in a tricky place," Cotton said, with no construction start imminent.

The building design was announced in December 2015, but delays surfaced in June 2016. Even if the neighbor issue is resolved, given the glut of luxury units, there may not be a business case for the planned 664 Pacific, wit…

The Islanders in Nassau: a "tease" of a return

So, the New York Islanders held a pre-season game Sunday at the renovated/downsized Nassau Coliseum--er, NYCB Live--and it sold out, with 13,917 fans, many tailgating in the parking lot. "Bring them back," chanted fans.

Does that mean the team, engaged in renegotiating its Barclays Center lease and likely bidding on a new arena at the Belmont racetrack site, might return to a shrunken Nassau arena, with few luxury boxes? Not so likely.

A tease at the Coliseum, wrote Newsday's Randi Marshall, who interviewed Brett Yormark, CEO executive of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment, which operates both arenas:
Yormark told The Point he sees a two-phase opportunity: first, the Islanders come back for some games, perhaps temporarily; and second, if the team reconsiders making the arena a more permanent home. Both, he noted, would require “doable” improvements to the arena.
“I think yesterday was a great first step for us in what will be a multistep process,” Yormark said in an inter…

Outside B15 site, sidewalk hazard finally fixed (in time for tonight's meeting)

Hey, remember the photo at right, which I published more than two months ago, of the sidewalk on the south side of Pacific Street east of Sixth Avenue, outside the stalled B15 site?

It was a hazard and, actually, a sign of more blight than was found in 2006 by Empire State Development (ESD), the state authority shepherding/overseeing Atlantic Yards (now Pacific Park).

In this case, rather than the state authority using the broken sidewalk (and other sidewalk cracks) as a justification for eminent domain, the city Department of Transportation first tried abatement, ordering the property owner--in this case, ESD, though the site would be taken over by the developer--to fix the hazard or face a fine.

And the fix has been accomplished, as shown in the photo below, from late last week. Perhaps the timing of it all will be discussed at tonight's Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park Quality of Life meeting.

NY Post front-page: suits vs. Barclays charge too-dangerous steep seats

Everyone who's been to the cheap seats at the Barclays Center knows they're pretty steep, thus adding a measure of hazard, and in some cases a very cramped fit trying to get past those already sitting down.

Add in a full house, large people, and/or drunkenness, and the hazard compounds.

A cover story Sunday, posted Saturday 9/16/17 as Fans sue Barclays Center over ‘exceedingly dangerous’ cheap seats, states:
The steep upper bowl of the Barclays Center has prompted at least four lawsuits from folks claiming they were crushed by fellow patrons who tumbled over the harrowingly sheer, narrow, dark rows or stairs. The story is keyed to the latest of the lawsuits, likely goosed by the plaintiff's attorney, since this case, as far as I can tell, is not yet publicly available in the state court database.

(I couldn't find the other three alleged suits, either, which means either I need to look harder, or they might have been settled before they moved ahead. A lawyer told the…

Nets said to hire Cleveland announcer after "borderline scam" local auditions

Update: yes, it's official.

The news isn't official yet, but there's solid evidence, as NetsDaily reports, that the Brooklyn Nets have hired the Cleveland Cavaliers' announcer, Olivier Sedra, to replace the departed David Diamante.

And that suggests that the Nets' July announcement of auditions (see press release, DNAinfo coverage) was another public relations stunt, which generated coverage on News12 and in New York magazine, among other press outlets.

Remember, Diamante, already a pro announcer, was chosen after the Nets in 2011 held auditions that generated even more press coverage. And he got gentle treatment.

In comments on NetsDaily, one fan observed that "it's hard to believe that they couldn't find new talent right here in Brooklyn" while another remarked on the "number of talented people" in the borough.

Responded Net Income (aka Bob Windrem), the main contributor to NetsDaily:
and one reason we didn’t do much on the "audit…

An affordable housing estimate: 800,000 units needed by 2050!

On Bisnow, 9/14/17, the article Building Affordable Housing In New York Keeps Getting Harder contained a hard number:
"I do not believe anybody has actually stated how many affordable housing units are needed in New York City," said Jonathan Rose, the CEO and founder of his eponymous firm. "My guess is about 800,000." Most of the numbers surrounding the idea of meeting affordable housing needs in New York are astronomical. The city has added about 50,000 jobs every year since the Great Recession, driving up demand for market-rate units even in the outer boroughs. Construction costs are higher in New York than just about any city in the world, which makes it impossible to build new affordable buildings without heaps of government subsidies. Keep in mind that Mayor Bill de Blasio's much-vaunted Housing New York Plan, announced in 2014, involves 200,000 units over ten years, but 60% of that, or 120,000 units, is preservation.
So 80,000 new units is just ten percen…

Updating Forest City's latest move: Land and Buildings letter from April slamming continued family control

When earlier this year I wrote about  Forest City Realty Trust (FCRT), parent of Forest City New York, indicated that the real estate investment trust (REIT) was considering a potential sale or merger, I said it was in response to harsh letters from the hedge fund Land and Buildings.

However, I only referenced the first two letters but not the third, from 4/25/17, which, as Bloomberg put it, "said Forest City would attract numerous bidders if it put itself up for sale."

Ok, here's the letter (also at bottom), with emphasis added, headlined "Land and Buildings Calls on Forest City Realty Trust to Form Special Committee to Evaluate Strategic Alternatives":
Dear Fellow Forest City Realty Trust Shareholders:
It appears to be business as usual at Forest City despite the announcement of two new director additions.
Regrettably for shareholders, that means the Ratners are maintaining their grip on Forest City and the composition of our Board of Directors. The announcemen…

For Atlantic Yards Quality of Life meeting Sept. 19, another bare-bones agenda (green wall?)

A message from Empire State Development (ESD) reminds us that the next Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park Quality of Life Meeting--which aims to update community members on construction and other issues--will be held:
Tuesday, September 19, 2017 @ 6 pm
Shirley Chisholm State Office Building
55 Hanson Place
1st Floor Conference Room
Brooklyn, NY 11217 The typically bare-bones, agenda, below, tells us nothing about the content of the presentation. One thing to look for is any hint of plans to start a new building on the southeast block of the project by the end of the year.

If not, ESD is supposed to re-evaluate a longstanding request from project neighbors to move back a giant wall encroaching on part of Dean Street between Carlton and Vanderbilt avenues. It's said to enclose construction activity, but, in recent months, has significantly served to protect worker parking.

Also, by the way, if you search for Atlantic Yards on Google or the ESD website, it leads to this page for the Atlantic Ya…