Atlantic Yards Countdown

The Brooklyn Paper
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The Empire State Development Corporation invited Brooklynites to comment on the agency’s draft environmental impact statement for the Atlantic Yards project by the end of the public-comment period on Sept. 29. We asked our readers to send copies of their testimony to newsroom@ Here is this week’s response.

What a strange time to live in. A humongous, for-profit development comprised of mostly condos for the rich can be framed as housing for the poor, jobs and hoops. It sounds like Bush administration-style doublespeak.

It is awful that the public has not been allowed to discuss the environmental impact of 16 30- to 60-story buildings imposed onto our little slice of historic Brooklyn without there being charges of racism. Ratner and his cabal of state cronies seem to have taken a trick from Lee Atwater’s “divide and conquer” playbook.

We are raising our children in what is sure to become known as Asthma Alley, as vehicular traffic sits gridlocked in 68 of the surrounding 93 intersections. There has been no mention of schools, parking, adding additional trains, or sewage and electrical infrastructure improvements for what will be the densest census tract in America.

It is not too difficult to see 20 years into the future when all of downtown Brooklyn could very well mimic Midtown Manhattan.

Our beautiful polyglot neighborhood where people live, work, educate and shop locally, where we know our neighbors and we are proud of our differences, will all have been changed.

The idea that a private developer can come in and dump practically an entire city into our town, make his billion dollars, and leave us to live in the mess seems more like Communist China than the United States.

G. Mayron-King and S. King, Boerum Hill

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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