Atlantic Yards Unveiling a Sad Echo of What Could Have Been


Frank Gehry is long gone, of course, but today’s “unveiling” of designs for a public plaza outside the Atlantic Yards basketball arena seemed intent on mocking the original high-architecture ambitions for the site. Where an office tower was supposed to rise, Bruce Ratner is now planning a slab of concrete, suitable for hosting the occasional farmers’ market, with a roof covered in plants “that change color with the season.” That’s called winter. But at least there’s a plan for the plaza. Any firm commitment to housing on the site — the apartments and condos that were supposed to justify the millions in tax breaks and subsidies ladled out by the city and the state — just disappeared. Fifteen of the sixteen residential structures are now lost in the fog of “market dependence,” according to Ratner. But, hey, Brooklyn, we sure hope you like Carmelo Anthony!

Wait, he might not be coming either?

Related: Atlantic Yards Report