When you walk over to the Barclays Center to catch an inevitably disappointing Nets game, you might have to start tiptoeing on the sidewalk, or pinching in your elbows to avoid a tractor trailer. Forest City Ratner, never a community favorite, is still igniting local opposition. According to Atlantic Yards Report, in July FCR submitted a plan to the Parks Department to install 206 bollards around the arena, which revealed that several of the sidewalks surrounding Barclays will be much narrower than what FCR originally analyzed in their 2006 environmental impact statement that ultimately helped FCR win approval from the state.
The effective widths (the portion of the sidewalk pedestrians use for travel after a buffer zone on each side of the sidewalk is subtracted from the design width) of several sidewalks have now narrowed, including one on Dean Street, an entrance to the arena. Three out of four sidewalks have seen their effective widths shrunk from five years ago in the latest FCR plans. Cyclists coming down Dean Street will also have to dodge vehicles dropping off arena patrons because a lay-by lane will run parallel with a bike lane.
These modifications from the 2006 plan were the result of a revised 2009 proposal approved by the Empire State Development Corporation without an environmental impact study. This led to a lawsuit that community organizers, residents, and local politicians won in 2011. Despite this, sidewalks are smaller. And Bruce Ratner retains his spot in the pantheon of Brooklyn supervillains.