A judge has given the “okay” to developer Bruce Ratner to break ground in Brooklyn next week on his Atlantic Yards development, with the groundbreaking ceremony on the Nets arena planned for March 11. Brooklyn Supreme Court justice Abraham Gerges rejected a challenge from property owners, who have fought to stall the project for six years, as Gerges reassigned private property to the state for the project.
State officials said occupants will be evicted from their homes over the course of the next few months, though construction will begin in some areas before then. And — whaddya know? — these residents weren’t too pleased with the ruling. “It feels like I live in a state run by crooks,” Daniel Goldstein told the Daily News. And patrons of Freddy’s Bar have pledged to chain themselves to the storefront to protest the eviction.
“There’s chains on the bar and a lot of people will be buying handcuffs,” said “opposition organizer” and Freddy’s frequenter Steve de Seve, “People aren’t just going to put up with this ruling.”
Let’s hope things don’t get ugly for De Seve and friends: Empire State Development Corp. spokeswoman Elizabeth Mitchell said the sheriff’s office will forcibly remove anyone who won’t leave.