clap clap blog: we have moved

Monday, September 01, 2003
Another valid reason to hate hipsters--from, I shit you not, the exact same guy who sent out the whole black-people-who-are-rude-are-racist thing:

Whether you live in the affected area or not is irrelevant. I'm sure we all will be affected one way or another by the influx of people if these structures are built.

Some of you already know of a proposal to build a 20,00-seat stadium & 5,500 unites of high-rise housing in the land between Pacific Street, Atlantic Avenue, Flatbush Avenue and Vanderbilt. The story broke 10 days ago in the Newark Star-Ledger and there have been further articles in the New York Times, NY Post and the Brooklyn papers (as well as in the Cleveland Free Times. The sports teams that would be imported to use the stadium are the New Jersey Devils and the New Jersey Nets. (The Devils current stadium has ground level parking for 20,400 cars. Where would all these cars be parked?). The scheme's prime mover is Bruce Ratner, CEO of Forest City Ratner, the company that is constructing the Atlantic Terminal buildng going up near the Willamsburg Savings Bank clock tower. According to the Star-Ledge the construction would be over the LIRR railroad tracks, which are owned by the MTA, which is controlled by Governor Pataki. Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz has expressed enthusiasm for pro teams moving to Brooklyn and let on that there have been behind-the-scenes talks for several months. Mayor Bloomberg has also said he would welcome the teams to New York. Bloomberg's development advisor, Deputy Mayor Dan Doctoroff, has said he wants the sky-scraper housing scheme to go through even if the stadium falls through.

Even without the stadium, the massive housing complex would change the character of our neighborhood forever. 5,500 units of housing would double the population of Prospect Heights, creating congestion and noise and air pollution. The only way to acheive Ratner's vision would be a "wall" of 20-story sky-scrapers stretching from Flatbusy to Vanderbilt. The Prospect Heights Action Coalition's alternative proposal is a PARK, and affordable townhouses (on the Atlantic Commons model).

WE MUST EXPRESS OUR OPPOSITION TO THIS PLAN NOW. Bruce Ratner is pressuring local politicians to sign a "Memorandium of Understanding," giving him a $350+ MILLION in city subsidies. Communicating NOW - by fax, email, phone message and letter - will have far more impact than after the politicians commit themselves. It's VITAL that we KEEP THE PRESSURE ON our elected officials, especially Governor Pataki (who heads the MTA, and has the power to give away the MTA land for free).


Am I the only one who sees a certain disparity in the same individual taking both of these positions?

It can be argued that the actions of the folks at the club are on pretty much the same anti-gentrification wavelength we're seeing here, and at least the former response doesn't keep jobs out of the community, unlike the latter. I actually think the stance in this message is a pretty good one, but it would be nice if the people taking it could do a little self-reflection and see how they're implicated in it, too.