Panels of the steel facade are set to be installed on the Barclays Arena in Atlantic Yards tomorrow, according to the New York Times, but while the arena moves closer to its September 2012 opening, the other 16 buildings at the site are still marred in controversy. In fact, no plans for any of those buildings have been finalized.
Last week, a State Supreme Court judge ruled that the project was subject to another environmental review, as the construction timeline for the second phase of the project was extended to 25 years. And the first phase is short of financing. To speed the process for the first phase, developer Bruce Ratner, chairman and CEO of Forest City Ratner Companies, is considering a cheaper, quicker, prefabricated construction method for the first proposed building, a 34-story, 400-unit residential tower. But the method requires fewer construction workers, and has opponents fuming as another instance of Ratner failing to deliver on his promises.
Moreover, the opposition, led by Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn, is combating the project on all fronts. It has fought against a rodent problem, the proliferation of bars in the area, and the traffic and congestion problems the project is sure to amplify. But on that last issue, the Times notes that Ratner has made progress. The $65 million renovation of a Long Island Rail Road rail yard is complete, and the $50 million reconstruction of the Atlantic Terminal subway entrance is on track. [NYT]