January 17, 2009
When the Action Moves On
ALEX WILLIAMS speculates that Washington DC is the new New York:
Massive development projects like Brooklyn’s Atlantic Yards, with its planned Frank Gehry-designed sports arena and 60-story skyscraper, appear stalled. There’s no sign the New Jersey Nets will be moving to the borough any time soon.
“I think the city that never sleeps definitely needs a nap,” Michael J. Petruzzello, a prominent Washington public relations consultant, said in an e-mail message. “Washington, not Wall Street, is where all the action is right now. We have the money, power and the celebrities. We own all of the banks and financial giants. The Obamas are the hottest power couple on the planet.”
OK, but the real estate industry, though connected to Wall Street and its cascading wealth, is a product of other factors, like the push from the mayoral administration, and Atlantic Yards is stalled not merely because of economics but because it prompted serious resistance. And demolitions for Atlantic Yards, as part of a project ostensibly to remove blight, have created blight where there was none before.
While I don't doubt a new local sports team could gain a following, especially with p.r. and press support, I haven't seen signs many Brooklynites are hankering for the Nets; the few times I've watched their games on TVs in local sports bars close to the AY site the response has been indifferent.
Oh, and the Times writer should've checked with someone in the Metro section. That 60-story skyscraper, at last notice, was to be 511 feet, though it's on indefinite hold until an anchor tenant could be found. And the market for office jobs was bogus from the start.
Posted by amy at January 17, 2009 11:05 AM