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March 12, 2008

When it comes to PlaNYC 2030, AY is still the elephant in the room

Atlantic Yards Report

Remember how Atlantic Yards was the elephant in the room when Mayor Mike Bloomberg's PlaNYC 2030 was presented last April, given that it went conspicuously unmentioned in the housing chapter?

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Well, city officials discussing the sustainability plan keep offering rhetoric counter to the sequence behind Atlantic Yards. The issue came up at the annual conference Saturday of the Historic Districts Council, with keynote speaker Rohit Aggarwala, who directs the Office of Long-term Planning and Sustainability.

The plan initially was to address population growth and land use, but quickly grew. “[We began] what we thought was going to be a strategic land use plan," Aggarwala said, "but we quickly realized: you can’t think about land use in a city without thinking about transportation. And you can’t think about transportation without thinking about air quality.”

The chain connects to energy, water, and climate change. “If we solve one problem the wrong way, it’ll set us back on the others,” he said.

Of course, Atlantic Yards was approved by the state without any transportation improvements beyond game-day tweaks, and even supporters think congestion relief is necessary for the an arena to have a chance at the site.

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NoLandGrab: HA! Aggarwala appeared at the Park Slope Civic Council's forum on sustainability last Thursday, and gave the EXACT same spiel. His comments spurred a handful of questions on Atlantic Yards, as several attendees were eager to call the Bloomberg administration on its hypocrisy, but the moderator (a known coward) gave Aggarwala a pass on the issue, contending that the forum was supposed to focus on "how to, not how not to."

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Posted by lumi at March 12, 2008 5:10 AM