Five New York City Mayoral candidates spoke out at a forum this week in Park Slope against Forest City Ratner, for FCRC’s failure to build promised housing at the Atlantic Yards project site.
John Liu, Bill Thompson Sal Albanese, Bill de Blasio, and George McDonald threatened to penalize FCRC for the delays:
“We have this stadium and the Nets are doing better, but what else have we gotten for the tremendous investment of public resources?” said Liu. “It has not been worth the cost.”
“If you have an agreement with the city and you don’t live up to the terms of the agreement, you owe us money,” said Thompson, adding that he had been a supporter of the controversial project because of the residential component.
“We need to clamp down on developers like these,” Albanese declared. “It’s outrageous that we give them these incentives and they go back on their word and the people of this city get snowed.”
“A lot of times, these companies want to come before the city later on and want to do things, and we can use that to our advantage,” said DeBlasio.
“You make them do what they have to do, and that may mean bringing them to court,” said McDonald.
Four of the five candidates are Democrats. McDonald is a Republican. The only candidates not to call for punishment at the forum were Democratic City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Republican grocery store owner John Catsimatidis:
Quinn only said that she wished the project had initially fallen under city rather than state review, while Catsimatidis would only lavish praise on the Barclays Center.
“I’ve been to the Barclays Center, I saw Barbra Streisand there and she did a great job,” said the Gristedes and Red Apple supermarkets owner.