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November 30, 2007

Another backroom deal

The Brooklyn Paper, Editorial

ConeofSilence.jpg While we can barely keep up with the known unknowns of the Atlantic Yards backroom deal, the Brooklyn Paper has been keeping tabs on another Ratner-style public-private partnership.

Though the editorial concurs that Downtown Brooklyn is the appropriate place for Ratner's latest plan to build the new tallest building in Brooklyn, Forest City's perennial cone of silence, dropped over this deal, too, really makes you wonder.

All developers make promises, and some of them fall short some of the time. But Ratner has fallen short most of the time, and has been paid handsomely for each insult. From the government-subsidized sterility of his fortress-like Metrotech (with its unused retail spaces and poor job-creation numbers), to the government bailout at Ratner’s pathetic Atlantic Center Mall, to the ever-rising taxpayer subsidy that underwrites his shell game at Atlantic Yards, there has been no accountability. Government keeps on partnering with Ratner — not only on the projects, but on the clandestine planning process, too.

There are already many cheerleaders for Ratner’s City Tech tower. But until public officials answer reasonable questions about this backroom deal, and show us that the public, and not only Bruce Ratner, will benefit generously from this project, we will remain skeptical.

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Posted by lumi at November 30, 2007 5:45 AM