City Point opponents set to head to trial

If unions are victorious, massive Brooklyn project could be stopped
August 14, 2013 06:00PM

Opponents of Brooklyn’s City Point project will have their day in court on Sept. 24, Crain’s reported.

Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Cynthia Kerns set the date for the case, which will give air time to unions arguing that the site fails to provide promised wages for construction workers or quality permanent employment — a suit the city has been fighting to have dismissed.

“We believe their claims have no merit and have moved to dismiss the petition,” a city spokesperson told Crain’s.

Acadia Realty Trust, the developer, has said the project, while not built union, is paying workers at least $20 an hour and that more than half the firms are women and minority-owned businesses.

“We look forward to explaining why this lawsuit is nothing more than an effort by unions to stall a project that is profoundly benefiting downtown Brooklyn and will create thousands of construction jobs, over 1,000 permanent jobs, and 120 units of desperately needed affordable housing once completed,” a City Point spokesperson told Crain’s.

Should the unions come out on top, the project, already underway, could be halted.

Though a hearing is an early step in the legal process, Tom Kennedy, the unions’ attorney, expressed excitement that his side was “not merely dismissed based on papers,” as he told Crain’s.

Even so, the unions suffered a setback recently when local City Council member Letitia James, in an about face, endorsed the project and withdrew her support for the suit. [Crain’s]Julie Strickland