Mayoral candidates blast Forest City Ratner over inactivity at Atlantic Yards

May 08, 2013 12:30PM

Several New York City mayoral candidates threatened to penalize Forest City Ratner for delaying the construction of housing at Atlantic Yards, the Brooklyn Paper reported.

At a forum Monday in Park Slope, former city Comptroller Bill Thompson said he would fine the Brooklyn-based developer if it couldn’t or wouldn’t build the residential component. Current Comptroller John Liu said it was a condition of the company’s agreement to develop 11 housing towers – between Sixth and Vanderbilt avenues – on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority-owned property in exchange for taxpayer subsidies, the newspaper said.

“We need to clamp down on developers like these,” said former Bay Ridge councilman Sal Albanese, another mayoral hopeful. “It’s outrageous that we give them these incentives and they go back on their word and the people of this city get snowed.”

Forest City Ratner started construction on the first residential tower, known as B2, in December. The building is slated to be the tallest prefabricated residential structure in the world, but has come under fire from construction unions for not creating as many full-time jobs as promised.

Republican candidate George McDonald joined in the criticism as well, saying he would consider filing a lawsuit.

Supermarkets owner John Catsimatidis, also a Republican candidate, did not call for punitive measures, but instead spoke highly of the Barclays Center.

“I’ve been to the Barclays Center, I saw Barbra Streisand there and she did a great job,” he said. [Brooklyn Paper]Mark Maurer