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Barclays Center
BacrlaysCenter.png
Location Brooklyn, New York
Broke ground March 11, 2010[1]
Opened 2012
Owner Forest City Enterprises
Operator Brooklyn Nets
(a Forest City subsidiary)
Surface 22 acres (entire complex)
Construction cost $800 million
Architect Ellerbe Becket
Capacity 18,000 (estimated, depending on configuration)
Tenants
Brooklyn Nets (NBA) (2012–)

The Barclays Center is a sports arena currently under construction in Brooklyn, New York City. The arena is being built partly on a platform over the Metropolitan Transportation Authority-owned Atlantic Yards at Atlantic Avenue. It is part of a proposed $4.9 billion sports arena, business and residential complex. The arena is intended to serve as a new home for the National Basketball Association's New Jersey Nets, currently based at Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

The arena was scheduled to open in 2011 along with the rest of the complex; however, controversies involving local residents and the use of eminent domain as well as a lack of funding have delayed the project.[2] The project is being developed by developer Forest City Ratner, who acquired the Nets in 2004, with the purpose of moving them from New Jersey to this site near the Atlantic Avenue-Pacific Street New York City Subway station and the Long Island Rail Road's Atlantic Terminal in Brooklyn, one of the most transit-accessible locations in the city. The move would mark the return of major league sports to Brooklyn, which has been absent since the departure of the Dodgers to Los Angeles in 1957 (their proposal for the world's first domed stadium at the Atlantic Yards to replace the unprofitable Ebbets Field had been turned down by the city in the past).

On March 1, 2010, Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Abraham Gerges struck down a challenge by property owners regarding the state's use of eminent domain, which allowed the private property to be condemned.[3] The groundbreaking for the project occurred on March 11, 2010.[1]

Contents

Design

Designed by world-renowned architect firm Ellerbe Becket, who has also designed the arenas used by the Boston Celtics, Charlotte Bobcats, Cleveland Cavaliers, Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies & San Antonio Spurs. The proposed arena would host the Nets, along with concerts, conventions and other sporting events, competing with Madison Square Garden and the Prudential Center, among other facilities. The arena's roof would've featured a park open only to residents of the Atlantic Yards complex, ringed by an open-air running track that doubles as a skating rink in winter with panoramic vistas facing Manhattan year-round, but since Frank Gehry is no longer involved, those roof plans have been scrapped. Gehry was the original architect on the job but his design was projected to put the cost of the arena at $1 Billion Dollars (USD). Becket's design puts the arena costs at $800 million.

Gehry's arena design would've been able to host hockey games with an NHL sized rink. Brooklyn is geographically the western end of Long Island, and many on other parts of the island have roots there, suggesting that the New York Islanders could play games there[4]. The Nets and Islanders shared Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum from 1972 to 1977. Financing documents for the arena released in December 2009 indicate that “The New York Islanders could potentially become a tenant” at the Barclays Center.[5]

Naming rights

It has been reported that London-based Barclays Bank has agreed to pay the team $400 million over the next 20 years for the naming rights of their future Brooklyn home. On January 18, 2007 it was announced that the arena would be called Barclays Center, becoming the third major league sports venue to be called a center in the NYC metro area. The New Jersey Devils hockey team now play in Newark, New Jersey at the Prudential Center, and the former home of the Devils and the current home of the Nets, Continental Airlines Arena, changed its name to the Izod Center.[6]

On September 10, 2008, it was reported by the New York Times that Barclays' contract for the naming rights expires at the end of November 2008 if the developer, Forest City Ratner, has not closed on the land and financing it needs to build the arena.[7]. Barclays agreed to extend the deal for another year meaning they have the right to terminate the deal in November 2009, presumably if ground hasn't been broken, though this did not happen.

Developments

The deal was headed towards failing or falling apart,[8] and Ratner had explored selling the team.[9] Due to the deal nearly failing at one point, the possibility remained that the Nets would eventually move into the Prudential Center in Downtown Newark, New Jersey. In October 2009, the Nets played two preseason games at the Prudential Center.[10] Due in part to the success of the two preseason games, a deal was struck and the Nets will play in Newark for two seasons beginning in the 2010-11 NBA season.[11]

On May 16, the arena's developers got good news as opponents trying to halt the project on claims that eminent domain could not take place, were thwarted when the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Ratner. However, groundbreaking is still no sure thing. Ratner claims to have the financing in place but it has been reported that he has gone to the MTA and asked them to lower the amount he owes them up front. Ratner successfully bid on the land for $100 million but now is asking to lower the down payment to as little as $25 million, leading the public to believe that his "in place financing" isn't so "in place" after all.

Also, the opponents plan to appeal the Supreme Court decision. A hearing for the appeal has been scheduled for October 14, 2009, with a decision to be issued likely no sooner than November 25.[12] Ratner needs to break ground by the end of the year. If the case gets heard and held up in court beyond December 31, 2009, Ratner loses the right to tax free bonds that would be issued in order to help make financing of the project more feasible. If he loses those bonds, it will be the dollar equivalent to roughly $150 million.

On November 24, 2009, the New York Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the state using eminent domain for the project. Empire State Development Corporation Vice President Warner Johnston indicated that the agency is committed to seeing the project completed and said "we can now move forward with development."[13]

Another potential roadblock to this development was put up by the Appellate Courts negative decision regarding a similar eminent domain case brought against Columbia University.[14] This landmark case could have given new life to the case being brought by the community group Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn (DDDB).

However, on March 1, 2010, Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Abraham Gerges struck down a challenge by property owners regarding the state's use of eminent domain, which allowed the private property to be condemned.[15] Groundbreaking for the project occurred on March 11, 2010.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b c Durkin, Erin; Hutchinson, Bill (2010-03-11). "Atlantic Yards Ground-Breaking Event Marked By Politicians, Pop Star and Protests". Daily News (New York). http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/03/11/2010-03-11_atlantic_yards_groundbreaking_event_marked_by_politicians_pop_stars_and_protests.html. Retrieved 2010-03-11. 
  2. ^ Calder, Rich (2008-01-28). "Court Trouble: Ratner Admits Arena-Funding Woes". New York Post. http://www.nypost.com/seven/01282008/news/regionalnews/court_trouble_793583.htm. 
  3. ^ Durkin, Erin (2010-03-01). "Judge Gives Atlantic Yards Project the Green Light". Daily News (New York). http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/03/01/2010-03-01_judge_gives_atlantic_yards_project_the_green_light_ratner_plans_on_breaking_grou.html. Retrieved 2010-03-03. 
  4. ^ http://www.islanderspointblank.com/2009/09/brooklyn-calling-on-the-islanderssource-nyi-wanted-to-join-nets-in-barclays-centre/
  5. ^ Calder, Rich (2009-12-03). "It’s half-off at Brooklyn arena, but Islanders 'could' join Nets". New York Post. http://www.nypost.com/p/nets_half_off_at_brooklyn_arena_Fn7k4wmOcWMIHSWK8Uts5H. Retrieved 2009-12-05. 
  6. ^ NY1: Nets' New Arena Reportedly To Be Called "Barclays Center"
  7. ^ Bagli, Charles V. (2008-09-09). "Brooklyn Arena Builder Plans to Break Ground in December After Delay". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/10/nyregion/10yards.html. 
  8. ^ Leitch, Will (2008-11-02). "No Red Dawn for Ratner". New York Magazine. http://nymag.com/news/intelligencer/51834/. 
  9. ^ Isola, Frank; Lawrence, Mitch (2008-10-27). "Bruce Ratner explored Nets sale". Daily News (New York). http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/basketball/nets/2008/10/27/2008-10-27_bruce_ratner_explored_nets_sale.html. 
  10. ^ "Prudential Center To Host New Jersey Nets Pre-Season Basketball". Prudential Center's Official Website. 2009-03-04. http://www.prucenter.com/default.asp?prucenter=107&objId=73. Retrieved 2009-03-19. 
  11. ^ "Nets will move to Prudential Center in Newark". Star-Ledger. 2010-02-18. http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2010/02/nets_will_move_to_prudential_c.html. Retrieved 2010-02-19. 
  12. ^ Thompson, Ryan (2009-07-09). "The Court Date Is Set for Atlantic Yards in Brooklyn". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. http://www.brooklyneagle.com/categories/category.php?category_id=26&id=29432. Retrieved 2009-09-10. 
  13. ^ "New York Court of Appeals Rules State Can Use Eminent Domain to Take Land for Atlantic Yards Arena Project". The Star-Ledger. Associated Press. 2009-11-24. http://www.nj.com/nets/index.ssf/2009/11/new_york_court_of_appeals_rule.html. Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  14. ^ Martinez, Jose; Lombardi, Frank (2009-12-04). "No Eminent Domain for Columbia University Expansion: Court". Daily News (New York). http://www.nydailynews.com/real_estate/2009/12/04/2009-12-04_columbia_land_grab_nixed_no_eminent_domain_for_university_expansion_court.html. Retrieved 2010-02-06. 
  15. ^ Durkin, Erin (2010-03-01). "Judge Gives Atlantic Yards Project the Green Light". Daily News (New York). http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/03/01/2010-03-01_judge_gives_atlantic_yards_project_the_green_light_ratner_plans_on_breaking_grou.html. Retrieved 2010-03-03. 

External links

Coordinates: 40°40′58″N 73°58′29″W / 40.682650°N 73.974690°W / 40.682650; -73.974690

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