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Before election, some businesses boarded up, arena plaza space truncated; unresolved result tamps down protest, leaves questions about federal help for NYC

Well, the presidential election remains unresolved as of this posting, though Democrat Joe Biden has the edge, while the Democrats failed to win the Senate--though they have the uphill shot of winning runoff election (or two) in Georgia.

That makes it less likely that the federal government will offer as much federal aid (and urban-focused policy) as New York City and State seek, which leaves huge question marks about the future of the city, the transit system, and high-rise, high-density projects.

Meanwhile, the Barclays Center and some--but by no means most--businesses nearby braced for possible unrest and looting related to protests, setting up cordons and boarding up some store exteriors. 

Likely because of the unresolved election, there were few protests in Brooklyn. Interestingly, many adjacent businesses made different decisions: Snipes on Flatbush was boarded up, while the two adjacent restaurants were not; the Apple Store installed barriers, but the adjacent Whole Foods didn't act; Warby Parker on Flatbush was boarded up, but adjacent businesses were not.

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle separately reported on measures taken in Downtown Brooklyn, noting that "several businesses on Court Street and Atlantic Avenue were damaged during a protest over the police shooting of Walter Wallace, Jr. in Philadelphia." The Brooklyn Paper reported similarly.

Barclays Center truncation

Notably, the Barclays Center, however welcoming to protesters--as the arena CEO said in a recent New York Post interview--saw the plaza severely truncated before the election, seemingly to stave off gatherings. 

Surely that was done in consultation with the New York Police Department, and the arena managers could plausibly say they were merely following advice, but an arena commitment to the public space could have limited that truncation--which is what happened yesterday morning when local elected officials gathered to criticize President Trump's premature claim of victory (as shown by the Brooklyn Reader). 

Also note that the arena had--before the election--removed the three pieces of street furniture used for wayfinding. 

Some were tagged with graffiti like ACAB (All Cops Are Bastards), which, while political speech, is surely not something arena managers endorse. Such graffiti was quickly cleaned off, but one piece of street furniture saw a panel dislodged and a fire set around it.

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