Hoop Dreams: Steel Erection Going Up at Ratner’s Barclays Center

The Atlantic Yards play opened last night in Brooklyn, but the real drama is onsite at the corner of Flatbush and Atlantic. A ballet of steel beams is dancing as the arena-that-almost-wasn’t gets underway. No more digging, no more demolishing–it’s all up from here for the SHoP-designed Barclays Center, the future home the Brooklyn Nets.

A spokesman for developer Forest City Ratner said the project remains on schedule, meaning it should be finished by the summer of 2012, with time to spare before the start of the season. Plans also remain in place to unveil designs for the first apartment tower early next year and to break ground on that project, which would be 50 percent affordable, by the summer. A second tower will follow six to nine months after that. Ratner is still seeking financing for the project, including the somewhat controversial EB-5 visa program, which is still awaiting federal approval.

mchaban [at] observer.com | @mc_nyo