Ratner comes closer to realizing dream at AY

February 17, 2011 12:30PM

Developer Bruce Ratner is finally seeing his dream come true on Dean Street, where he is building the Barclays sports arena for the Brooklyn Nets basketball team at Atlantic Yards. Next year, Brooklyn will have its first professional sports team since the Dodgers left in 1957, and the 18,500-seat Barclays Center will host more than 200 events, including concerts, pro boxing promoted by Oscar de la Hoya, tennis, the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus and Disney on Ice. But the future didn’t always look this bright. There was a time in October 2008 when Ratner thought his plans might not come to fruition, he told the Daily News. “Like a lot of people, I didn’t know if we’d all be on bread lines,” he said. “When the Yankees got financed in January ’09, it was the first glimmer of hope that we’d get financed… This arena we’re looking at being built required $500 million in financing. A billion in total costs, including interest, land and architecture.” Ratner also battled several lawsuits in 2009 that scared off investors, including one brought by a holdout resident who had lived in his condo for less than a year when Ratner petitioned for eminent domain for the rail yards and the surrounding land to build his arena and a 16-building complex of affordable and market-rate housing. [NYDN]