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January 27, 2012

First residential tower now delayed until spring or summer; Forest City admits "goal" of including more larger units won't be met; CM James says developer's not meeting commitment

Atlantic Yards Report

Say what you will about creepy Jim Stuckey — he wasn't so nearly prone to ineffectual blathering as Jane Marshall.

For the umpteenth time, Forest City Ratner has pushed back the projected groundbreaking for the first Atlantic Yards residential tower, Building 2 (B2), at the corner of Flatbush Avenue and Dean Street flanking the Barclays Center arena. Now the groundbreaking could be spring, as most recently projected, or summer.

Also, as acknowledged today at the Atlantic Yards District Service Cabinet meeting, Forest City will not meet its "goal"--purportedly guaranteed by the Community Benefits Agreement and long promoted by the developer--of ensuring that half of the subsidized "affordable housing" would be (in square footage) devoted to larger units of two and three bedrooms.

"It doesn’t dilute our desire to meet the commitment in the future," insisted Forest City executive Jane Marshall at the meeting, held at Borough Hall.

"I understand your desire," responded Council Member Letitia James, skeptically. "I desire to be thin, and young"--the audience chuckled--"but that’s not going to happen. The bottom line is that, there was a commitment, there was a promise. There’s a need in the neighborhood... I would hope you would honor your commitment to the community.”

Forest City Ratner's partner ACORN, or its successor, was supposed to hold the developer to its housing pledge, but Bertha Lewis, who promoted the project because of the pledge, has not yet questioned the commitment.

Click through for Norman Oder's timeline of Forest City's moving Building 2 "goal" posts — which have now been moved 10 times in a little more than two years.


NoLandGrab: Forest City's repeated delaying of housing construction sure helps our confidence in all their other promises — but surely they'll deliver with the Transportation Demand Management plan or the reopening of the Carlton Avenue bridge. Right?

Posted by eric at January 27, 2012 11:05 AM