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July 9, 2008

Appeal filed in case challenging AY environmental review; hearing will be in September

Atlantic Yards Report

The last (for now, at least) major legal obstacle to the Atlantic Yards project moved forward one major step Monday as Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn (DDDB) and 25 co-plaintiff organizations appealed state Supreme Court Justice Joan Madden's January 11 dismissal of a challenge to the project’s environmental review.

(A new eminent domain case is expected to be filed in state court after being dismissed in federal court, where it was aimed because plaintiffs felt that venue offered a better shot. Another case in state court challenges the project timetable.)

While courts typically give much discretion to evaluating agencies, it will be interesting to see whether (and how) the state appeals court agrees that it’s OK to designate a building built at less than 60% of allowable development rights as blighted, or that it was legitimate to consider a professed ten-year project buildout as legitimate in the face of a mountain of evidence--including the construction schedule attached to the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS)--to the contrary.

(The insta-snarks at New York magazine’s web site said the appeal was the work of “Atlantic Yards haters.” It might be equally said that the appeal was the work of "haters-of-government-fudging.")

NoLandGrab: More snark from Atlantic Yards-hater haters at Curbed.com.

The appeal brief contends that the FEIS submitted by former Gov. George Pataki's Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) was fatally flawed; success in this case would not necessarily block the project but would require a new EIS and a new vote by the Public Authorities Control Board (PACB).

Along with the ESDC and PACB, defendants in the case include the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and developer Forest City Ratner (FCR). A response from the defendants is expected in August and oral argument will be held in September; the defendants had requested that oral argument be held in the spring.


The NY Sun, Atlantic Yards Opponents File Appeal
The Campaign for Community-Based Planning, Another Atlantic Yards Appeal Challenges Environmental Review

Posted by lumi at July 9, 2008 5:16 AM