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Markowitz leaves Borough Hall with business unfinished - Brooklyn Paper

Markowitz leaves Borough Hall with business unfinished

When we were Kings: Borough President Markowitz left office with restoration work on the palatial Loew’s Kings Theater in Flatbush, the site of his first date, still ongoing.
Brooklyn Borough President/Kathryn Kirk

Oh, what Marty could have done with another year.

During his tenure, Borough President Markowitz has achieved many of his visions for the Borough of Kings — not least bringing the Nets, Ikea, and a succession of cruise ships to Brooklyn. But the Beep’s ambitions for the borough were as big as his personality, so inevitably some dreams must be deferred.

Many of the projects he championed have been completed during his term, but others — such as the Loews Kings Theater renovation that got under way this year — will not be finished until Markowitz’s successor has taken the throne.

“While I am proud of what I have accomplished as Borough President, there are several projects that I will not get to see completed under my tenure,” said Markowitz. “I will be the Borough President Emeritus when this ‘wonder theater’ reopens its doors for the first time in this millennia.”

His vision for a Coney Island amphitheater in the Childs building is also on its way with the near-unanimous blessing of the Council in its last vote of the year. The initiative made its first concrete progress early on Saturday morning, when backhoes cleared out a community garden in the venue’s footprint.

Other pet projects remain on the drawing board, but Markowitz remains optimistic that he will one day see their completion. But for all his tireless cheerleading, Markowitz will admit that even his best efforts could not always yield the desired results.

“There are several projects that were simply beyond my control,” he said.

Markowitz has long dreamed of returning Brooklyn to its industrial roots, and hoped to lure high-tech electronic manufacturers to the working-class neighborhoods of Brownsville and East New York. But alas, that task will be left to his successors.

“We cannot give up on bringing manufacturing back,” said Markowitz. “Our communities want to work, and we must provide them with good-paying jobs. I am disappointed that I was unable to accomplish this, but I have high hopes that the next administration will.”

Markowitz’s other dreams include a casino in Coney Island and bringing the world’s sport — professional soccer — to the borough that is a crossroads of the world.

“What better place than Brooklyn for a soccer stadium and a team to call it home?” Markowitz said.

Ultimately, the outgoing Beep is certain that no matter what he has achieved, Brooklyn is the greatest city in the world, and if its citizens were smart enough to elect him three times in a row, he says, they are smart enough to achieve anything.

“The future of Brooklyn is boundless potential. We have the greatest dreamers anywhere, and I’m sure there is plenty of excitement to come,” he said.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4514.
Borough resident: Marty Markowitz is about to make the transition to civilian life.

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