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February 16, 2009

Is it possible for Atlantic Yards arena price tag to be cut (nearly) in half? And what would that mean?

Atlantic Yards Report

New York Times reporter Charles Bagli, who last March almost casually broke the news that the price tag for the Atlantic Yards arena had reached $950 million (from $637.2 million as approved in December 2006), last Friday slipped in another cost estimate with major implications.

In a CityRoom blog post taking off from the news that Gramercy Capital Corporation had extended the terms of a loan to Forest City Ratner, Bagli wrote last Friday:

Forest City has indicated that it will delay building its planned office tower or the first of the residential buildings, but it is still hoping to start construction later this year on the arena, which was designed by the architect Frank Gehry. Knowing that it could not obtain financing in the credit markets for an arena costing $1 billion, Forest City has put engineers to work trying to cut the price in half. (Emphasis added)

That's a pretty dramatic reduction, and it raises a question: what would a $500 million arena look like? It likely wouldn't look like the $950 million arena (right), as depicted in desgins released last May.

Norman Oder ponders the costs and implication for the arena sponsors.

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Posted by lumi at February 16, 2009 5:32 AM