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March 24, 2009

Bloomberg says "it would be sad if Atlantic Yards gets built without the Gehry design" but seems resigned to it

Atlantic Yards Report

In his most recent comments on Atlantic Yards, NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg "offered some offhand and ill-informed support for Atlantic Yards, as well as resignation that it might be built on the cheap, without a Frank Gehry design."

"It's also true that it's a good example to us when you--in this case, it wasn't like Atlantic Yards-- but when you litigate again and again, what happens is that the economy changes and the assumptions that were made in the past which are typically made at the top of the market, because that's when people want to build things, have to get changed, downscaled, and it would be sad if Atlantic Yards gets built without the Gehry design, which would've been phenomenal for this city, although I gather at this point it looks like that the only ways Ratner's going to get that done is to do it at a lower cost and not to do everything at the same time."

What's Bloomberg leaving out? Oh, that maybe government shouldn't endorse the assumptions that are made at the top of the market, but maybe should proceed with more caution.

Bloomberg doesn't sound like he's informed beyond reading the newspaper, but he should know that his own administration, via the City Funding Agreement, allowed the developer to build far less than promised and at a slower pace--all before the economic downturn.

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NoLandGrab: The Mayor's comments are interesting because they betray exactly the type of thinking that led the country into the current economic mess: "Assumptions made in the past, which are typically made at the top of the market" assured investors that there was no risk in sub-prime mortgages and credit-default swaps because real estate ALWAYS increases in value.

Four more years anyone?

Posted by lumi at March 24, 2009 5:47 AM