One of the odder bits of fallout to come out of the, um, change of membership at Community Board 6 is that a critic of Atlantic Yards is replacing one of the opponents who got axed this week.
Brad Lander, the director of the Pratt Center for Community Development, was nominated for a spot on the 50-member advisory board by City Council Member Bill de Blasio and appointed by Borough President Marty Markowitz, according to the board's new list (PDF).
Pratt published an independent analysis of the project in March 2005 that complained that “the process through which this development has been advanced has not been sufficiently fair or accountable” (PDF). Mr. Lander says, however, that he does not consider himself “a die-hard opponent” of Atlantic Yards.“In its current form, I consider myself in a very highly ambivalent position,” he told The Observer Friday. “I believe that the project could’ve been, and maybe still could be, modified to a place where I could support it, yet still be recognizable.”
Mr. de Blasio has said that he took his nominees’ positions on Atlantic Yards into consideration when he decided whether to reappoint them or not. The one nominee that he did not reappoint, Madelaine Murphy, was described by the Brooklyn Papers today as “a vocal critic of Atlantic Yards”—so, compared to that, maybe Mr. Lander’s criticism seemed mild.
Besides, Mr. Lander, a Park Slope resident, is known to be one of the leading advocates of affordable housing in the city, and that is one of Mr. de Blasio’s platform issues, and a big reason for his support of Atlantic Yards in the first place.