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August 11, 2009

Waiting for the "September surprise"? That's when Forest City Ratner will unveil new arena designs

Atlantic Yards Report

Someone called me yesterday about scheduling an Atlantic Yards-related event in September.

I pointed out that any AY event that month has to be scheduled around the "September surprise," when Forest City Ratner, with fanfare, unveils the next design of the Atlantic Yards arena, wins back certain members of the chattering class, and allows Mayor Mike Bloomberg to look City Planning Commission Chairperson Amanda Burden in the eye.

Sure, I speculate, but look at the evidence. Yesterday CEO Bruce Ratner told the New York Times:
[CEO] Mr. [Bruce] Ratner said he expected to release new images of the arena before Labor Day. “I think the final architecture will be really beautiful,” he said.

Labor Day is Monday, September 7. The final day for people to submit comments to the Empire State Development Corporation on the 2009 Modified General Project Plan is August 31.

When will it be?

Presumably the designs will be finished before August 31--but there's no need to flummox the public by releasing them during the comment period, right? Will they be released Friday, September 4?

Friday is traditionally the day people expect extended arts coverage in the Times, so it could be a good way to win back architecture critic Nicolai Ouroussoff, who dissed the latest arena design, by arena specialists Ellerbe Becket, as a "monstrosity."

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NoLandGrab: If the arena is going to be "really beautiful," why not let us see it now so we can sing its praises to the ESDC?

Posted by eric at August 11, 2009 9:34 AM