Atlantic Yards Environmental Impact Review Suit Dismissed
Late yesterday afternoon State Supreme Court Judge Joan Madden issued her ruling dismissing the suit brought by 26 groups challenging the environmental review process that led to the approval of Atlantic Yards. Judge Madden's ruling weighs in at 71 pages and the crux of her finding is that the actions of the Empire State Development Corp. "were neither arbitrary, capricious nor an abuse of discretion" and satisfied legal requirements. She wrote that "the court is not permitted to second-guess the agency."
Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn quickly promised an appeal of the decision pending a review. The suit challenging the taking of property for the Atlantic Yards projects is still in Federal court on appeal, but that suit was dismissed last year after a ruling that the litigation belonged in state court. Forest City Ratner has already demolished or is demolishing about half the buildings in the project's "footprint." In his authoritative Atlantic Yards Report, Norman Oder thoroughly analyzes the decision and concludes that the odds of success of an appeal of Judge Madden's decision are not good (and reminds that suits challenging environmental review processes are notoriously difficult to win). He writes: "if it's rare to succeed on state lawsuits challenging environmental review, the same is true on appeal, despite potential flaws in the judge's decision, some mentioned below. The appeal of the federal eminent domain case was heard in October, with the three-judge panel often skeptical of the plaintiffs."
BREAKING: Suit Against Atlantic Yards Environmental Review Dismissed [GL]
After eight months, state judge dismisses challenge to AY environmental review [AYR]
Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Seeking to Block Atlantic Yards [NYT]
Court bounces suit on Ratner's Yards [NYDN]
Labels: Atlantic Yards