Bruce Ratner seems to be as tired of the ongoing Atlantic Yards debacle as everyone else. The Wall Street Journal reports that the developer is looking to sell Forest City Ratner’s 20 percent stake in the Brooklyn Nets. He already sold off its 80 percent stake in the team as well as numerous shares in the arena, many of them bought by Chinese investment fund Greenland.
Quid pro quo: in exchange for guaranteeing a $1.2 billion loan in 3 WTC, the Port Authority wants an ownership interest in the 80-story building, according to Crain’s. Which doesn’t necessarily make it a good use of public money, particularly considering the vacancy rate in Lower Manhattan, but would at least make it a better use of public money. A still better use of public money? Directing funds toward much-needed transit improvements.
One indication of why building a lot more commercial space might not be the best idea: the state was so disappointed with the bidding for a former women’s prison in Chelsea that they have re-opened bids with the possibility of a long-term lease, Crain’s reports. The ESDC said that about 30 developers toured the property, but few actually made bids; significant renovation work would be necessary to bring the 1930s-era prison up-to-date.
The MTA is preparing for the possibility of a LIRR strike, The Wall Street Journal reports, and has authorized putting out an RFP for weekday bus service should negotiations break down. Of course, there are always taxis in a pinch, though they are pricey and will now cost 30 cents more per ride with a new surcharge aimed at making half of all taxis wheelchair accessible by 20/20, The New York Times reports.
Affordable housing experts are so eager to weigh in on de Blasio’s big policy reveal that they are not even waiting for the reveal. The Architects Newspaper talks to a handful of real estate professionals about what we can predict and say about the as-yet-unreleased proposals. But nobody predicted that negotiations with the teachers union would push back the much-anticipated announcement indefinitely. Nonetheless, Alicia Glen gave a few hints at a luncheon attended by Capital New York: density and mandatory inclusionary zoning seem to be in the cards. “To become a more affordable city, we must become a denser city,” the deputy mayor said.
We certainly need help: Is Bed-Stuy ready for 2 million condos? Brownstoner asks. We don’t think so! For $2 million you can still, at least as of now, still buy a whole brownstone in the neighborhood. Sorry, but a Bed-Stuy townhouse duplex, even a very nice one, just isn’t worth that. Not even with all the cafes with “Parisian flair terraces” in the world.
Salt Lake City, along with New York, Boston and San Francisco, was found to have high levels of social mobility for a U.S. city several years ago. However, Atlantic Cities reports that things have already started to change for the worse, with many of the factors that led to mobility, most significantly, a strong and sizaeble middle class with few at the economic extremes, disappearing. Social workers and researchers say they are seeing more intergenerational poverty than ever before.
Real estate crime update: Arrests have been made in the death of Hasidic landlord Menachem Stark, DNAinfo reports. Sources are claiming that one of the men has confessed to the crime.