December 28, 2007
The state of his borough: Marty sits down for his annual chat with The Brooklyn Paper
This year, Marty Markowitz didn't blow a gasket when discussing Atlantic Yards during his year-end interview with Brooklyn Paper editor Gersh Kuntzman.
The only time Bruce Ratner's controversial Atlantic Yards project was mentioned was in relation to development of Coney Island and Deputy Mayor Dan Doctoroff's recent admission that, if he had to do it again, he'd recommend that Atlantic Yards go through the City's Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP).
GK: Indeed, in this case, there will be a ULURP [a thorough public review, unlike at Atlantic Yards].
MM: That’s because [Coney Island] is city property. The Atlantic Yards … of course the statement by Dan Doctoroff [a reference to the deputy mayor’s comment that Atlantic Yards should have gone through the ULURP process]. All I can say is the state decided that this was their project. Dan Doctoroff went along with that. The mayor endorsed it wholeheartedly. [Doctoroff] has the right to reflect, of course. Here it is at the end of 2007, and there are no shovels in the ground yet. It’s very frustrating. Those who oppose it are delighted, but for those who think it’ll be good for New York City, it’s frustrating, but it has to go through the process.
NoLandGrab: Marty's City-vs.-State-property argument is totally bogus.
Here's some interesting precedent the non-state-owned land in Bloomberg's first Hudson Yards plan was reviewed under ULURP, while the railyards portion was reviewed under the State process called SEQRA.
NYC is conveying several acres of city-owned streets and sidewalks to Ratner's Atlantic Yards plan, and most of the property is NOT in the railyards.
The real determining factor is REZONING:
- Coney Island is zoned as an AMUSEMENT DISTRICT. This is a unique designation and the City understands that any changes demand careful consideration.
- Atlantic Yards is a TOTAL ZONING OVERRIDE. If built according to Bruce Ratner's plan, Atlantic Yards will become the densest residential community in the nation. This is a fact that would NOT be lost in nearly every stage of the ULURP process, however, it was easily swept under the rug in the SEQRA process. It is not likely that density of historic proportions, as proposed by Ratner, would survive the ULURP process.
It's a little disturbing that a politician who claims to "have the intellect to be a great mayor" can't wrap his head around the dramatic contrast between the Coney Island and Atlantic Yards review processes.
Posted by lumi at December 28, 2007 5:01 AM