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August 3, 2006

Would half of the affordable apartments be 2br & 3br? No way (read the fine print)

Atlantic Yards Report

You've heard it before, "the devil is in the details."

Today Norman Oder explains why Forest City Ratner's and Bertha Lewis's claim that "about half of the 2250 affordable units will be two- and three-bedroom units, thus accommodating families," depends on what you mean by "half."

It turns out that the 50% refers to total square footage, not the actual number of units. That language is in the Housing Memorandum of Understanding (p. 4) FCR signed with ACORN last year.

And it's also in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement from the Empire State Development Corporation. The Executive Summary states (p. 4): Affordable units would be reserved for households making between 30 percent and 160 percent of citywide AMI (area median income) and 50 percent of these units (on a square foot basis) would be two- and three-bedroom units.

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NoLandGrab: Keep in mind that Forest City Ratner claims that half of the rental units would be so-called "affordable." In this case, the developer uses the OTHER DEFINITION of half, meaning half of the UNITS, not SQUARE FOOTAGE.

To understand the developer's multiple claims, average community folk need to keep both definitions of "half" handy.

Posted by lumi at August 3, 2006 9:28 AM