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

Barclays Center says, yes, it's cordoning off the plaza regularly. Atlantic Ave. parking on game days. The Nets logo on Dean Street didn't require permission. Curious.

This the third of three posts about the Nov. 16, 2021 Quality of Life meeting. The first concerned the school, and project updates. The second concerned affordable housing.

Mandy Gutmann of the Barclays Center made a presentation, starting by outlining the arena company's work on food instability. "This weekend will be in four different locations throughout the borough distributing thousands of meals to support those who otherwise may not be able to have a warm Thanksgiving meal and will continue to do a number of great initiatives throughout the community and supportive to not just the youth but also adults and ensuring that everyone can have a happy holidays."

Such welcomed initiatives, it should be noted, typically are supported by an arena sponsor--or in this case, as NetsDaily reported, the new Brooklyn Nets and New York Liberty Foundation, which is apparently a successor to a previous team-related foundation, and is likely supported by sponsors and others.

The partner was the Downtown Brooklyn Neighborhood Alliance, centered on the House of the Lord Church (pastored by the Rev. Herbert Daughtry), the last remaining active member of the much-hyped Atlantic Yards Community Benefits Agreement. (The charitable event also was covered by the New York Post Nets beat writer.)

Note: to my surprise, Gutmann said nothing about the new "You/We belong here" neon signage sponsored by the Social Justice Fund of the Joe & Clara Tsai Foundation.
About the plaza

I submitted a question about the policies behind cordoning off the plaza, both on event days and on non-event days. "What is the policy and how has that changed? How is this influenced by COVID protocols and/or concerns about protests?"
"On event days or days that maintenance work is happening, we will cordon off part of the plaza," Gutmann said, "ensuring that there still is of course access across the plaza as well as access to the transit entrance."

Indeed, as shown in the photo at left, taken before the Brooklyn Nets' home game on Nov. 19, most of the plaza was cordoned off, with access limited to ticketholders.

"During the events, the bike racks help us maintain the flow of guests into the venue," she said. "There are multiple steps in the process of entering the arena, such as showing vaccine cards, security check, ticket scanning, and so that really helps us maintain flow and not get backed up in that process."

Along Atlantic Avenue, non-game day
She didn't say anything about concerns about protesters, but--after the "chaos" of the first Brooklyn Nets game, with anti-vax protesters, it has to be on their minds.

Either way, it suggests that "We belong here"--if "We" is the arena company--trumps "You belong here."

That said, the protest Friday night, as I reported, was manageable.

The arena flanks

I also asked about the surprising absence of parked cars from the Atlantic Avenue flank of the arena, where the "No Standing" rule had long been flouted. I asked if that was a policy change from the arena or NYPD.

The lay-by lane "on Atlantic Avenue outside of our VIP entrance is used only on game days," Gutmann
Atlantic Ave. parking, game day Nov. 19, 2021

said. "Regarding Flatbush, I'll defer to the NYPD on that. They would be best to address the lay-by lane and the usage of that."

That's curious.

Indeed, on Friday, when the Brooklyn Nets had a home game, the Atlantic Avenue lay-by lane was being indeed being used for parking.

That Nets logo on Dean Street

I asked about the advertisement--"really a logo," Gutmann said-- for the Brooklyn Nets on the wall on the east side of the Dean Street entrance to the arena. Previously, there wasn't a logo, so how does that fit into the project's Design Guidelines? Did the arena ask for or get permission?

"We're not aware of any permission that would have been required for the installation of the logo outside that Dean Street location on our building," Gutmann said.

Maybe, maybe not. The Design Guidelines say that signage on Dean Street frontage "shall be limited to a maximum height of 25 feet" and "150 square feet" of surface area.

As the photo shows, that logo exceeds those guidelines--but maybe they don't apply.

The Design Guidelines don't say anything about what might be called Dean Street sideage.

So the logic seems to be: if it's not forbidden, it's allowed. Which is an argument, then, for revisiting Atlantic Yards documents that no longer seem to apply.

Though not quite in context, it reminds me of a 2007 observation by Rob Lane of the Regional Plan Association:
Similarly, [Atlantic Yards] tries to compensate for the lack of continuous public oversight with a set of overly rigid design guidelines that cannot accommodate changes in architects, market demand or neighborhood needs.

Or, in this case, an arena operator that aims to monetize as much available space as possible.