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Showing posts from 2023

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Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park infographics: what's built/what's coming/what's missing, who's responsible, + project FAQ/timeline (pinned post)

In Hochul's proposed 421-a extension, a lifeline for B5 tower (and others with foundation starts). Gov. will work with Legislature on renewal of tax break.

In her proposed FY 2024 Executive Budget, Gov. Kathy Hochul, among her housing proposals , has offered real estate developers a significant benefit, with an extension of the construction deadline for projects fueled by the 421-a tax break for more than 4.5 years:  In order to unlock thousands of units of housing currently under construction, the Executive Budget extends the 421-A construction deadline through 2030. The Budget also expands HCR’s Tenant Protection Unit as part of a multi-year investment to provide targeted support for tenants in upstate New York. Of course "currently under construction" is a bit of a dodge, since many developers simply did preliminary work on foundations by June 15, 2022 to qualify for the tax break--and may not have proceeded since then. There are many reasons for delay, but one, as the Real Deal has reported , is that the June 15, 2026 deadline for construction was getting tenuous, since lenders wanted the buildings completed a year early. If

In Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park lobbying reports, scant hints regarding contacts with state and city. Department of Buildings issues over platform construction?

So, what do recent lobbying filings regarding Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park tell us? Not much, but they do hint that master developer Greenland Forest City Partners is trying to remove some roadblocks to progress. The state lobbying database  indicates  that the lobbying powerhouse Kasirer expects to be lobbying state and local public authorities and local development corporations--the Atlantic Yards Community Development Corporation?--as well as the New York City Department of Buildings.  The latter may--I speculate--be a stumbling block in the announced by long-delayed plan to start building a platform over the Vanderbilt Yard. Other reports from 2022 indicate contact with Empire State Development (ESD), the state authority that oversees/shepherds the project, perhaps--I speculate--regarding the increasingly untenable May 2025 deadline for the project's affordable housing. Surely the developer seeks to extend the deadline and/or avoid the onerous $2,000/month fines for each missing

Barclays Center releases February 2023 calendar: 21 ticketed events over 15 days, including Nets, concerts, Globetrotters, WWE, and Jurassic World Live.

The Barclays Center yesterday released its February 2023 calendar of ticketed events: it includes 21 events over 15 days: seven Brooklyn Nets games, three concerts, two Harlem Globetrotters games (in the same day), one wrestling event, and eight Jurassic World Live Tour family shows over three days. So that's better than the sparse February 2022 calendar, with seven events over seven days, but still trailing February 2020, with 25 events over 19 days before the pandemic hit. February 2022 The February 2022 calendar was fairly sparse: seven events, including, five Brooklyn Nets games, one concert, and one Harlem Globetrotters game.  There was one canceled Globetrotters game and two canceled concerts, as well as a canceled Hillsong United music+worship service.  February 2020 The arena's  February 2020 calendar  included 25 events over 19 days: four Brooklyn Nets games, four New York Islanders games, five concerts, two Harlem Globetrotters games, one Oprah event, and nine Jurassi

ANHD explains: not only are many "low-income" units not aimed at truly needy, AMI "high housing cost adjustment" makes things worse

As I wrote yesterday,  the low-income units at the new 1010 Pacific development, however below-market, are not aimed at the truly needy. More than 89% of the households in the city considered rent-burdened--paying more than 30% of their earnings in rent--earn less than 80% of Area Median Income (AMI), according to the Association for Neighborhood Housing & Development (ANHD). Let's take a closer look at their statistics, released last September with their AMI Cheat Sheet, part of a report titled  New York City's AMI Problem, and the Housing We Actually Need . (The document is in full at bottom.) Notably, as is clear, those designed "low-income" but earning 80% of AMI, however much they might appreciate below-market new housing, make up a far less rent-burdened cohort--paying more than 30% of income toward rent--than those earning less.  Also note that the maximum affordable rent the city allows, $2,402 for a two-bedroom, is likely more than those at the 80% AMI

1010 Pacific, first spot rezoning built in CB 8, has "low-income" units $1,576 to $2,002, though those most rent-burdened won't qualify. Market-rate starts at $3K.

From Pacific House So the first fruit of the spot rezonings in Community Board 8, the 176-unit apartment building at 1010 Pacific Street, branded Pacific House , is coming into view: market-rate units are being leased, and the city's Housing Connect lottery for the 53 "affordable" units has launched. Notably, the 52 "affordable" units--better termed "income-linked"--aimed at households earning 80% of Area Median Income (AMI), are technically considered the upper bound of low-income, under the city Department of Housing Preservation and Development's guidelines . 1010 Pacific, from Atlantic Avenue But the rents, however below-market, are not aimed at the truly needy. More than 89% of the households in the city considered rent-burdened--paying more than 30% of their earnings in rent--earn less than 80% of AMI, according to the Association for Neighborhood & Housing Development (ANHD). There are four studios listed at $1,576, which is actually l

An alternate take on the Barclays Center-SeatGeek split: ticket company faced "recurring tech issues" that frustrated concert promoters, led to one cancellation.

Now there's some plausible, if not completely convincing pushback, on the suggestion, based on circumstantial evidence and past industry practices, that the Barclays Center short-circuited its ticketing contract with SeatGeek to rejoin Ticketmaster because of the latter's partnership with the concert promoter Live Nation. So, my recent headline --"At Senate hearing, new evidence of Ticketmaster's power: SeatGeek CEO says Barclays Center sought to retain contract for Nets games, not concerts"--might be amended to "new evidence of Ticketmaster's value." At least if we believe the sources, some unnamed in Billboard's 1/26/23 Barclays Center Ditched SeatGeek for Ticketmaster After Recurring Tech Issues , which cites problems in selling tickets for certain concerts. That said, it should be noted that it was problems with Ticketmaster--notably bots invading a Taylor Swift presale--that led to a Congressional hearing. Both systems add significant charg

Chelsea Piers offering $180/month Fitness Center memberships at 595 Dean, opening June 1. Fees locked in one year. (DT BK ≈ $220.) What about Field House?

Some Prospect Heights neighbors have gotten invitations to join the Chelsea Piers Fitness Center  scheduled to open June 1 at the base of--and mostly below-- the two-tower 595 Dean Street (B12/B13) complex. A founding membership includes a rate of $180/month, locked in for a year, with no initiation fee, a free personal training session, an unsepecified gift package and six annual guest passes. There's a pre-sales office nearby at 594 Dean Street. That $180/month, which I suspect won't last more than a year, is less than that of other Chelsea Piers locations, according to the web site Choosing Nutrition . (Chelsea Piers doesn't list fees on its website .)  Choosing Nutrition states that the monthly fee at the flagship club in Chelsea is $250, while that on 265 Schermerhorn Street, at the base of the building known as 33 Bond in  Downtown Brooklyn , is $220. (Or $225, according to this Reddit thread .)  An All-Access Membership is $285. That also includes access to the clu

What do cheapest 2023-24 Nets tickets cost? Despite hints of $35 full-season and $45 half-season, the few now available start at $45 and $55.

On Wednesday, I got an email from the Brooklyn Nets alerting me to the opportunity to buy 2023-24 "season memberships," aka full-season or half-season tickets. It's an interesting time--early?--to solicit ticket buyers. Though I clicked through fairly soon to test out the pricing, none of the purported $35/game full-season tickets or $45/game half-season tickets were available. Instead, for full-season plans at $45, I found just 24 full-season tickets available, just 20 available at $55, and 18 at $60 each.  For the half-season, I could find only a few available at $55/game. (All prices include fees.) Current ticket prices That said, it's unclear how many tickets they're setting aside for individual sales. Remember, the New York Post reported in October that the Nets were "dead last" in season-ticket sales, chasing away some long-time ticketholders with price increases--but others noted that single-game ticket sales were strong. ESPN says the Nets this

Nearly three months late, and with no explanation for the delay, a bi-monthly Quality of Life meeting is set for Feb. 7. Time for answers to big project questions?

With no explanation for the failure to hold the expected bi-monthly Quality of Life meetings in Novembe or January,  Empire State Development (ESD), the state authority that oversees/shepherds the project, yesterday announced that the next meeting would be held, virtually, on Tuesday, February 7, at 6 pm. There's nothing yet on the official Atlantic Yards page , but the information came in an email that provided the Zoom link and other access information: Dial In: 646-558-8656 || Passcode: 962 5641 1661# Meeting ID: 962 5641 1661 Project-related questions and suggested agenda items may be sent to .  Lottery launch? I suspect one topic, or announcement, may regard the launch of the lottery for the 240 "affordable" units at 595 Dean St. (B12/B13), scheduled to open in the spring, as well as a timetable for opening the building's market-rate units.   Note: I reported that, despite professed ignorance from master dev

At Senate hearing, new evidence of Ticketmaster's power: SeatGeek CEO says Barclays Center sought to retain contract for Nets games, not concerts.

An explosive Senate Judiciary Committee hearing (video) yesterday, was summarized by The American Prospect as Senators Berate the Ticketmaster Monopoly , with some suggesting that "it was time to unwind the disastrous 2010 merger between [concert promoter] Live Nation and Ticketmaster." Live Nation is already under investigation by the Justice Department. Though the hearing, That’s the Ticket: Promoting Competition and Protecting Consumers in Live Entertainment , was triggered in part by a high-profile snafu involving Taylor Swift ticketing, news that Barclays Center had abruptly canceled its contract with SeatGeek to return to Ticketmaster-- reported by the New York Times ten days earlier--got an important cameo. While Barclays operators eschewed comment to the Times, SeatGeek CEO Jack Groetzinger revealed yesterday that Barclays had sought to keep SeatGeek--an upstart company that prides itself on innovations like 3-D views from seats and a mobile-first approach--to ticke

From City & State: BerlinRosen again ranks high in 2023 Political PR Power 50 (not that they mention Atlantic Yards)

BerlinRosen, the public relations/consulting powerhouse that has long represented the developers of Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park, this year was ranked fifth in City & State's The 2023 Political PR Power 50 . The subheading to the 1/9/23 list is "The top communications gurus and masters of spin in New York politics" and, indeed, such high-priced firms not only shape the answers from their clients, they shape the overall environment. As I wrote 11/24/16, an analysis of the "agents of the city" email document dump showed a fevered January 2015 response by BerlinRosen to an op-ed (only only) in the New York Times criticizing the effort to bring the 2016 Democratic National Convention to the Barclays Center. "How many immediately surrounding local businesses can we get lte's [Letters to the Editor] in today?" wrote firm co-founder Jonathan Rosen to colleagues and advisors to Mayor Bill de Blasio on 1/21/15, the day of my essay. "How many do we

Clarifying Times probe of "questionable dealings" by Adams' pals: State Liquor Authority *did* find Woodland liquor license had been turned over to twins.

The drip-drip of troubling news about Eric Adams continues, notably the New Yorker report  about his questionable mentoring of con man and "Bling Bishop" Lamor (aka Lamar) Whitehead.  While I  cited  the New Yorker's report on Whitehead's connection to the Barclays Center, I didn't mention the reference to Woodland, where Whitehead and Adams liked to hang out, "the first restaurant run by the Petrosyants brothers [Robert and Zhan, aka Johnny], who now run La Baia," the mayor's current place of choice.  Eric Lach's article notes that "character testimonies to the judge" sentencing the brothers, who pleaded guilty to federal charges, included a letter from Whitehead about a purported an anti-childhood-obesity program--one that Robert Petrosyants didn't recall. In a 1/19/23 article,  Adams fundraising haul buoyed by swell of real estate cash , Politico noted that the mayor held campaign fundraisers at La Baia: And Akiva Ofshtein — the