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August 3, 2010

If FCR doesn't build over the railyard, would "the vast majority" of benefits be realized, as the developer claimed last year to the ESDC? Not at all

Atlantic Yards Report

What happens if Forest City Ratner doesn't build a platform over the Vanderbilt Yard and build out the full Atlantic Yards project?

That's a possibility, given the renegotiation of the railyard deal last June with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which allows FCR bow out of railyard development after Phase 1 by paying out less than the cost of building a new permanent railyard.

Astonishingly, FCR in March 2009 told the Empire State Development Corporation that "the vast majority" of benefits for the community would be "entirely realized in the remote circumstance of MTA's default scenario."

As I explain below, that's not true in the slightest, given vast differences in the amount of jobs and affordable housing, and the complete absence of any analysis of tax revenues.

FCR, as a "show of good faith" in its commitment to the full project, said it would ensure that $2 million of $3 million planned for local parks and public spaces would be available in the first phase.

But that's hardly a guarantee that Phase 2, which would cost a few billion dollars, would be built.

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Posted by eric at August 3, 2010 2:04 PM