Thursday, June 09, 2005

Atlantic Yards Exemplar

The New York Times runs a good piece today by Jim Rutenberg and Michael Brick on the difference between the West Side stadium and the Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn. It rightfully points out that Ratner’s group was politically more astute and created community-based support that will ultimately, in our opinion, lead to the building of an arena for the Nets in Brooklyn.

As we mentioned in a previous post:

So proponents of development need to cultivate local stakeholders and develop a genuine public interest rationale that resonates with local constituencies as well as wider publics. Failing to do this, more than any anti-development climate, is what often dooms the grandiose plans of deputy mayors and developers.
Rutenberg and Brick seem to agree:

While the Brooklyn plan still has hurdles, its progress so far is providing an object lesson in how to navigate big projects through the often treacherous and choppy waters of New York state and city politics. In the Brooklyn project, backers have aggressively courted the local community since the project's inception, trying to placate those who could be its most aggressive foes.
The Times also hits the mark by singling out the role of Bruce Bender. Bender has been the master political orchestrator and has used his vast government experience to do what Deputy Mayor Doctoroff failed to do: create a consensus that is the prerequisite of success.