Marty’s varying views

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The developer who is bringing Trader Joe’s to Court Street wants to build a six-story annex to that store on a parking lot on Atlantic Avenue that is only zoned for a five-story building.

That single extra story — 10 feet! — drew the ire of Borough President Markowitz last week when the Beep recommended that the city deny the developer, Two Trees Management, a variance to build a little higher.

Yes, this is the same Marty Markowitz who continues to cheer the Atlantic Yards project, a massive, 16-tower, highly subsidized mega-development that would overshadow thriving neighborhoods all around it, create life-draining “superblocks,” suck up taxpaper resources, congest local streets and use the state’s power of eminent domain to evict residents so their land can be turned over to a private developer — in this case, his friend, Bruce Ratner.

Markowitz said the Court Street variance would set a “dangerous precedent” because the proposed building is in the Cobble Hill Historic District.

But where was his concern about the far more dangerous precedent of selling state-owned land to Ratner at a bargain-basement price, doling out billions in subsidies and doing it all with very little public scrutiny — oversight that Markowitz himself later undermined by purging local community boards of some anti-Yards members?

It is no secret that this page has frequently clashed with Markowitz over his support for the project, which remains his greatest error in judgment since he took office.

But his attempt to now present himself as a foe of overdevelopment because he opposes a 60-foot building in a 50-foot zone is laughable.

Updated 4:31 pm, July 9, 2018
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