Paper Dragon at Atlantic Yards

Talk about fighting bureaucracy with bureaucracy. The Council of Brooklyn Neighborhoods is waiting until the last day to submit a 250- to 300-page response to draft environmental impact statement on Atlantic Yards.

“The deadline is Sept. 29 at 5:30,” said C.B.N. co-chair Candace Carponter. “We will submit our response at 5 o’clock, maybe a little earlier, like 1 o’clock.”

So is this just a clever delaying tactic? Carponter, after all, is an outright opponent of the project and a member of the steering committee of Develop–Don’t Destroy Brooklyn. And the 30-plus member groups of the Council are generally critical.

“If I had my druthers, I would love to give them trouble,” Carponter told us, “but the reality is we just got the draft from our experts over the weekend to Tom Angotti, who is helping us, and he tried to review them and now they have gone to 13 volunteers reviewing it for consistency and objectivity…. There has been an extraordinary effort to get this done on time.”

The Empire State Development Corporation and its consultants have to wade through the comments–along with hundreds of statements made at public meetings or submitted in writing–before making some sort of response to the response.

“They have to review every single comment and incorporate them into the final E.I.S. where applicable,” said E.S.D.C. spokeswoman Jessica Copen. “I think it will be at least November and more toward late November when the final E.I.S. will be complete.”

Then the E.S.D.C. must approve the project, followed by the state’s Public Authorities Control Board, which means that the project may slip into the next governor’s term.

Our advice to E.S.D.C.: Start early! The C.B.N. is posting stuff here.

Matthew Schuerman

Paper Dragon at Atlantic Yards