New Arena Thread: Rogers Place? Yawn...
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05-15-2013, 10:30 PM
Join Date: Feb 2012
Originally Posted by
On the brooklyn arena. What was the reason for the delay? Economy? 10 years was just too little time?
The Brooklyn arena got held up by a bunch of lawsuits from people who didn't want to sell their homes (Ratner was initially offering twice the going rate for homes in that area, even too people who lived there less than a year) and people who didn't want a mega mixed use arena, residential high rise, and office building complex in their neighborhood. The arena was originally planned to open in 2006 but the suits didn't get resolved until like 2009. You also had the financial crisis in the middle of that, which resulted in a loss of some of the funding. Thats why you saw Ratner (the majority owner of the Nets and the project developer) sell a majority stake in the team to Mikhail Prokhorov and the arena scaled down from being a true dual-purpose arena to being a basketball arena where a hockey surface can be awkwardly jammed in.
On a side note the Ratner family is a very prominent Cleveland family (where I live) and word in the Cleveland finance circles after they bought the Nets (I got this second hand so take it for what its worth) was that Ratner never had any real interest managing a basketball team and was more or less indifferent to the teams on court performance, he just needed the team as an anchor to is overall real estate vision. Bringing a major league sports team to Brooklyn for the first time in over 50 years helped to grease the skids to get approval for what was a bigger project than what Brooklyn was used to dealing with.
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