Atlantic Yards wins legal victory

By Jason Fink

The $4 billion Atlantic Yards project cleared a hurdle Thursday when a state appellate court dismissed a legal challenge by the development’s opponents.

The ruling upheld a lower court decision that the state acted properly in approving the project’s environmental impact study. A separate case challenging the state’s use of eminent domain in taking land for the project, slated to include an arena for the Nets, is also being heard by the appellate court.

Developer Bruce Ratner, who has been locked in a long-running battle with community groups over the project, said in a published report that it’s “time to put these cases behind us and get to work.”The group that brought the case vowed to take it to the Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court.

“The Court of Appeals is the only court that can break the chain of previous cases, and we eagerly await our opportunity to argue before it," Jeffrey S. Baker, the attorney for Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn, said in a statement on the group’s Web site.

Both Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz praised the court’s decision.

In addition to the arena, plans for the 22-acre site include 6,000 apartment units.

Tags: atlantic yards , nets , bruce ratner , development

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