This is an interesting read about how developers promise something to the surrounding community to build a stadium or an arena.
But anyone who’s visited the Barclays Center can attest: there is no Urban Room at the site, despite a 2014 agreement between the developers and the state that set a hard deadline for its creation—along with a $10 million penalty if the owners failed to build it in time.
That deadline passed in May. Now, elected officials and community advocates are calling on Gov. Kathy Hochul and Empire State Development, the state entity overseeing the project, to collect on those missed deadline fees. They say doing so is paramount to holding the developers accountable to their public promises—a sore spot when it comes to Atlantic Yards, where an original Community Benefits Agreement inked in 2005 that pledged jobs and affordable housing for the neighborhood was never sufficiently enforced.
Why is this interesting you might ask? Look over in Flushing and see what was promised by the developers like Sterling Equities to get the Iron Triangle property. Now with all the talk of a new soccer stadium and possible casino that Steve Cohen wants to build, where does that put the affordable housing, green space, and new infrastructure on the list of promises? Can a developer just pay a fine and it goes away? I’m not saying any of this is actually going to happen in Flushing but could it?