Mayor Bill de Blasio continued his run of affordable housing groundbreakings, joining Bruce Ratner, executives from China’s Greenland Group and other officials in a ceremony at Brooklyn Park. The affordable housing in Pacific Park, formerly and better known as Atlantic Yards, is adjacent to the Barclay’s Center and was an essential part of the agreements to construct Barclay’s. The building at the center of today’s groundbreaking is to include 298 “affordable” units.
Following a lengthy program and a shovel photo opportunity Mayor de Blasio spoke with the press. Between separate on and off topic portions the mayor made a statement addressing the unfolding hostage drama in Sydney, Australia and the attack on two NYPD lieutenants during the large protest march held on Saturday. His statement on the protest march praised the NYPD for its “brilliant effort” to date in handling the recent wave of protest marches, termed the Saturday night attack “fundamentally unacceptable” and asserted that it is “incumbent on” peaceful protestors “to stop any potential act of violence.” Here is Mayor de Blasio’s statement:
On Topic Q&A:
On topic questions included plans for additional Chinese investment in New York City, the City funding in this project, how this building meets the original terms of the Atlantic Yards agreements, whether there are concerns about the pace of construction, how the mayor is assuring existing residents about increased density, what earnings level qualifies for “affordable” housing and whether the mayor is worried about meeting his goal of closing on 16,000 units of affordable housing this year.
Off Topic Q&A:
Off topic questions included a reported plan to remove some portraits currently displayed in City Hall, the recent installation of additional fencing around Gracie Mansion, whether the CUNY adjunct professor charged with the Saturday attack on two NYPD lieutenants should be fired, a report that a commercial flight to Puerto Rico was delayed because of Mayor de Blasio’s late arrival to the airport, his ongoing war of words with PBA president Pat Lynch and Sergeants Benevolent Association president Ed Mullins and Cardinal Dolan’s related op-ed, Gracie Mansion tours and the expected course of the NYPD response to further protests.