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December 3, 2007

Pragmatism vs. principle: a look at the MAS & Atlantic Yards

Atlantic Yards Report

Norman Oder takes an in-depth look (does he know any other way?) at the recent Last Exit piece on Kent Barwick, and probes the grey areas in the Municipal Art Society's milquetoast approach to Atlantic Yards:

Municipal Art Society (MAS) President Kent Barwick's severe dismay over the process behind Atlantic Yards, suggesting that the project may become this generation's Penn Station, constrasts with his organization's "mend it don't end it" stance regarding the project.

That deserves a closer look. On the one hand, the MAS and allies in BrooklynSpeaks have a legitimate role in steering clear of the lawsuits challenging the project; that allows them to offer constructive criticism if the project does proceed, while groups opposing Atlantic Yards (added: in court) won't get much, if any, attention from Forest City Ratner and the Empire State Development Corporation.

On the other hand, if Barwick really does believe the process was so bad, the principled extension of that posture would seem to be full-scale opposition. Instead, BrooklynSpeaks believes that better future process can redeem past bad process.

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Posted by lumi at December 3, 2007 1:07 PM