Monday, April 30, 2012

PHNDC asks Cuomo, Bloomberg to stop construction of arena parking lot before public input, notes plans have been delayed for nearly six months

In a last-minute effort, the Prospect Heights Neighborhood Development Council (PHNDC) sent a letter today to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Mike Bloomberg asking them to suspend construction tomorrow of a planned arena patron surface parking lot on the southeast block of the project, bounded by Vanderbilt Avenue, Carlton Avenue, Dean Street and Pacific Street.

The organization includes several block and neighborhood organizations in Prospect Heights.

The issues include City Planning standards; storm water drainage; curb cuts; and the role of stackers or multi-story parking--and the continued delays regarding plans for the lot.

Continued delays

The letter notes that plans have delayed repeatedly:
Representatives of the Empire State Development Corporation [ESDC] and Forest City Ratner Companies originally stated that plans for the lot would be provided in December 2011 and that there would be a period of community review and comment. We have recently been notified construction of the surface parking lot will begin May 1 and that plans will be made public May 22. In the meantime, the parking lot will have been under construction for three weeks.
Residences surround the parking lot, and because it is separated from Barclays Center by two avenues, arena patrons and arena related vehicles will be channeled past bedrooms and playground using neighborhood streets and sidewalks.
Court ruling: no impact?

The potential persistence of parking is one reason why ESDC and Forest City lost a lawsuit filed by PHNDC and other community groups, but that hasn't changed things on the ground. The letter notes:
The NYS Supreme Court Appellate Division referenced the above ground parking in its unanimous reaffirmation this month of a lower court ruling that the ESDC failed to consider the impact of this parking lot on our community when it approved changes to the Atlantic yards project plan in 2009. ESDC has yet to comply with a court order for a supplemental environmental impact statement to be prepared. It now appears the State of New York and the City of New York may allow the developer to build the arena parking lot without any opportunity for input from the community or its elected representatives.
PHNDC letter to Cuomo/Bloomberg re Atlantic Yards Parking Lot

2 comments:

  1. Is there any possibility anyone will listen to them?

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  2. Given the late timing, it's certainly a long shot, but there will be a meeting on Wednesday where community members will have a chance to question ESD CEO Kenneth Adams. I'll have a post about that Tuesday morning.

    ReplyDelete