The Bloomberg administration, moving to restart stalled development in the heart of Downtown Brooklyn, has picked a big housing and retail complex to receive $20 million in tax-exempt bonds financed by the federal stimulus program. The complex, City Point, would bring hundreds of apartments and a large shopping center to the eastern end of the Fulton Mall.
One other project was selected from numerous applicants.
This is part of the Recover NYC program:
The Recover NYC Program provides financial assistance to private-sector for-profit companies seeking lower-cost financing for shovel-ready construction projects. Available assistance is mainly in the form of access to triple tax-exempt bond financing authorized under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The program is administered by NYC Industrial Development Agency (NYCIDA) and NYC Capital Resource Corporation (NYCCRC), both staffed by New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC).
Would AY be eligible? Nope
Private sector, for profit companies with projects located in NYC Recovery Zones (see maps below) seeking to acquire, construct, renovate or equip facilities within New York City that will result in a positive economic impact. Commercial, industrial, manufacturing and retail projects requiring between $20 million and $100 million are all eligible to apply for consideration*. Eligible projects must also demonstrate the ability to utilize the federal bond allocation in a timely manner, but no later than its expiration on December 31, 2010. Therefore, an underwriter and all permits and approvals must be in place at the time of application.
It would be tough for Atlantic Yards to make the deadline, given that the NYCEDC would announce the candidates for the second round on November 3, before the Atlantic Yards eminent domain case is likely resolved.
But the issue's moot. Only projects located in the yellow recovery zones would be eligible, and the parcel going east of the intersection of Atlantic and Flatbush avenues isn't included. But I wouldn't be surprised at other efforts to gain some stimulus funding for AY.
Questions of fairness
In the Times, one watchdog questioned the Recover NYC program:
“This is a sort of David-and-Goliath example of small businesses that are paying the rent and providing services to a diverse constituency of Downtown Brooklyn and having something kind of dropped on top of them, which is a big wealthy developer getting subsidies,” said Bettina Damiani, director of Good Jobs New York, which studies the use of economic development incentives. “So the impact on the local community needs to really be taken into consideration before we move forward with economic stimulus.”