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Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park graphic: what's built/what's coming + FAQ (pinned post)

WSJ: Gehry lays off staff working on Atlantic Yards; FCR again blames legal challenges

I guess those rumors about Atlantic Yards architect Frank Gehry were true. Earlier this year, I was told that Gehry was working only on the arena, not the rest of the project.

While that may not have been precisely true, the new designs released in May involved the arena plus just two towers--a distinct contrast with the previous iteration, which involved all five buildings on the arena block. (DDDB in September reminded us of four iterations of renderings and the two distinct phases--see below.)

And for weeks I've been told--all secondhand--that the Los Angeles-based Gehry Partners laid off staff working on the Atlantic Yards project.

Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal pinned it down enough to go public, in a brief piece headlined Gehry Lays Off Staff:
Frank Gehry laid off more than two dozen staffers in late November after client Forest City Ratner ordered the architect to put down his pencils on the $4 billion Atlantic Yards project, according to people familiar with the matter. A Gehry Partners LLP spokeswoman declined to comment.

A Forest City spokesman declined to comment and pointed to a previous statement that said work on the Brooklyn, N.Y., project was delayed because of legal challenges. Forest City has said it is committed to the 22-acre site, slated to be anchored by a basketball arena plus residential and office skyscrapers.

Explanation not credible

The blame-the-lawsuits ploy regarding Gehry is even less credible than the claim that lawsuits have stalled all work at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Vanderbilt Yard.

After all, if Forest City Ratner is truly committed to Atlantic Yards, couldn't they ask Gehry's office to work on Site 5? Or Phase 2?

Loan coming due

The Wall Street Journal also reported:
A $153 million land loan from Gramercy Capital Corp. that has accrued to $177 million, is due at the beginning of February. Forest City is in talks with Gramercy to extend the loan.