Just hours before the close of the public comment period for the Atlantic Yards draft environmental impact statement, leaders of 28 Brooklyn neighborhood groups went to the Manhattan headquarters of the Empire State Development Corporation and demanded the state agency scrap its flawed DEIS of Bruce Ratner’s $4.2-billion mega-project.
“The report must be made complete and accurate before the project can move forward,” said Candace Carponter, a spokeswoman for the coalition, the Council of Brooklyn Neighborhoods.
Minutes after speaking, Carponter and others delivered the CBN’s 300-page analysis of the Atlantic Yards’ DEIS to the state planners who are scheduled to approve the document within several weeks. The project can’t proceed until a final environmental impact statement is drafted and approved.
Earlier in the week, the CBN criticized the “serious workmanship and/or methodological error” in the study, but had refused to openly call for the DEIS to be scrapped — or the overall project be delayed — out of fear of appearing biased against the project without adequate reason.
The last-minute call to rewrite the DEIS cut to the core of local concerns about the project’s enormous public burden.
“This report is missing adequate analysis that is needed to understand what impacts this project will have on the people and environment of Brooklyn,” said Tom Angotti, a professor of urban affairs at Hunter University who authored a section of the CBN’s 300-page report.
Borough President Markowitz established the CBN last year after local community boards complained about their lack of input on the state project. The group’s response to the DEIS was funded through a $230,000 grant from the City Council.