It’s fairly common to pick on Bloomberg, and particularly Deputy Mayor Dan Doctoroff, for having a Manhattan-centric development policy. That was the thrust of Anthony Weiner’s big policy speech the other day.
But it’s a bit more complicated than that, and that perception is a mark of how the stadium — Weiner’s real target — has come to overshadow everything else City Hall does.
Take one of the really egregious inequities between Manhattan and the outer boroughs: broadband internet access for small businesses. Few businesses can do without it, yet several areas — from the Brooklyn Navy Yard and parts of DUMBO to Hunt’s Point — aren’t wired for it. Either the businesses pay $1,000 a month for T-1 lines, or they dial up. This Center for An Urban Future report lays it out, and the City Council held a hearing on it January 10.
In our brand new hi-tech blogger capacity, we were brimming with outrage and ready to fit this into Weiner’s claim that the boroughs are being neglected, but apparently it ain’t so. The report’s author, Jonathan Bowles, tells us that since his November report, City Hall “is responding to this and definitely moving in the right direction,” creating a task force and hiring a consultant to deal with telecommunications infrastructure issues.
“Some (including me) wonder whether, in the end, they’re really going to focus enough attention on the problems of small businesses in places like Hunt’s Point, Red Hook and Sunset Park,” Bowles emails. “Time will tell.”