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May 19, 2009

How Forest City Ratner pulls the strings behind the AY Construction Updates (and why the ESDC should answer questions

Atlantic Yards Report

Whoopsie! The Empire State Developerment Corporation forgot to remove the original distribution-list names on one "Construction Update," indicating that developer Bruce Ratner (not NY State) is calling all the shots and explaining why pesky watchdog reporter Norman Oder keeps getting the run around.

This may not seem like a big deal, but it's illustrative of an uneasy relationship in which ESDC must both oversee and promote Atlantic Yards. Officially, the ESDC circulates and posts the updates, announcing:

In an effort to keep the Atlantic Yards Community aware of upcoming construction activities, ESD and Forest City Ratner provide the following outline of anticipated upcoming construction activities.

The statement that "ESD and Forest City Ratner provide" suggests that the state agency should be willing to answer questions raised by discrepancies in the updates, such as my query about why announced utility work on Pacific Street never apparently occurred.

However, the ESDC sent me to Forest City Ratner, which ignores my queries and, not being a government agency, is not subject to any oversight. So the government and the developer should be asked about Pacific Street utility work at the upcoming Senate oversight hearing.

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Posted by lumi at May 19, 2009 6:13 AM