City Traded Parking Spots for Yankee Stadium Suite

yankpark.gifNot that we need more evidence that the Yankee Stadium parking deal was rancid to the core, but a Saturday story in the Times reveals the sad details of the Bloomberg administration’s push for luxury game day digs — a 12-seat suite in left field — for which it traded 250 spots to the team.

The parking spaces were given to the team for the private use of Yankees officials, players and others; the spaces were originally planned for public parking. The city also turned over the rights to three new billboards along the Major Deegan Expressway, and whatever revenue they generate, as part of the deal.

The quest for perks first made news months ago following an inquiry by Assembly Member Richard Brodsky, but the nature of recently uncovered e-mails between the team, the city, and the Economic Development Corporation is depressingly banal.

At another point, raw personal feelings emerged, as evidenced during this exchange, starting June 29, 2006, between top city officials about Randy Levine, the Yankees president.

"If we want a deal on the suite, he wants 250 spaces," Seth W. Pinsky, then the executive vice president of the city’s Economic Development Corporation, wrote to Daniel L. Doctoroff, a former deputy mayor. After Mr. Doctoroff did not respond, Mr. Pinsky, a bit sheepishly, wrote the next day: "It comes down to how much we’re willing to rely on Randy’s word."

"Let’s not give," Mr. Doctoroff replied. "I don’t trust him."

The Daily News has more, including PDF files of some e-mails. The News notes that taxpayers could end up paying for the spots if stadium garages, as expected, take a loss.

And the kicker? Follow the jump for mind-bending quotes from Westchester’s faux-populist-in-chief.

Mr. Brodsky said what emerges from the e-mail correspondence is a sense of entitlement ingrained in Bloomberg officials. He said that the city appeared to be pushing for use of the suite for not just regular-season games, but for the playoffs and the World Series, and for special events like concerts, too.

"There’s this ‘Alice in Wonderland’ quality to the question of, what is the public interest here and who’s protecting it?" said Mr. Brodsky, who conducted a hearing on the issue of public financing of sports stadiums this summer. "We can’t find the money for the M.T.A., or schools, or hospitals, and these folks are used to the perks and good things of life, and expect them."

Richard Brodsky railing about entitlements and perks — in the name of the MTA? We are through the looking glass, indeed.

  • tammany hall redux

  • Melky Cabrera

    Ahh you guys never miss a chance to bash Brodsky. Keep ragging on the few members of your government who are active and trying to help New Yorkers. Real progressives such as Brodsky will continue fighting for the little guy whether the ten bikers on here like him or not.

  • Are Real Progressives like Real Americans, but Littler Guys?

  • Marty Barfowitz

    Brodsky isn’t particularly interested in helping New Yorkers. Brodsky’s interested in Brodsky. He’s a dramatist. He likes going up against Billionaire Bloomberg. He likes how that looks. He likes how it plays in the Daily News.

    More often than not Brodsky’s stuff is utterly ridiculous and besides the point. For example: Where the hell was Brodsky when the City and State were actually giving out the tax breaks and parking spots to the Yankess, Nets and Mets? He was nowhere to be found. Now here he comes with some emails about a luxury box for City Hall and we’re supposed to think he’s some kind of populist hero? Hell, City Hall should have gotten a whole lot more than a luxury box for all of the loot our elected officials handed over to these sports-owning robber barons.

  • Rhywun

    I just assume everything tied to sports stadiums is a boondoggle for the rich. It’s been pretty accurate so far.

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