Brennan Drops Plan for More Atlantic Yards Parking, Will Push Transit Instead

Assembly Member James Brennan has abandoned the idea of implementing additional parking minimums at Atlantic Yards. That plan would have led more people to drive to the arena while failing to keep on-street spaces open for area residents.

Wrote Brennan in an email to Streetsblog:

I understand the concerns raised about my idea of compelling Ratner to provide off-street parking. I agree completely that the correct policy is not to encourage automobiles coming to the area, so I am dropping any notion of initiating legislation on this subject. You should know that my intention was not to increase parking, but to compensate for the fact that the Empire State Development Corporation eliminated Ratner’s obligation to provide 2300 units of underground parking at the arena as part of the deal to delay completion of the project until 2035. My focus next session will be to find incentives for mass transit.

That’s encouraging news. Atlantic Yards is going up at the site of Brooklyn’s biggest transit hub — precisely the space not to induce more auto trips with government-mandated parking. It’s good to see Brennan on board with efforts to ensure that as many people as possible take the subway, the bus or the Long Island Railroad to get there.

  • Sarah

    This is really great news. I suggest adding Assembly Member Brennan’s contact info to this post in order to thank him. I think it’s important to show support for a sensible decision.

  • J

    This is a big deal. Great work, Streetsblog, and kudos to Councilman Brennan for actually listening to concerns about his position and responding appropriately. We need to keep a vigilant eye on our politicians, so that they pursue actions that help our neighborhoods and our city.

  • J

    This is a big deal. Great work, Streetsblog, and kudos to Councilman Brennan for actually listening to concerns about his position and responding appropriately. We need to keep a vigilant eye on our politicians, so that they pursue actions that help our neighborhoods and our city.

  • momos

    Extraordinary. Councilman Brennan deserves credit for his honest response and revising his position. And Streetsblog deserves credit for keeping watch.

  • Streetsman

    Great. I hope some decent incentives for mass transit are actually contemplated. Howabout a free, bike-carrying game-night shuttle bus getting people to the new ferry stop at Atlantic Ave/Brooklyn Bridge Park?

  • ddartley

    Did this feel to anyone else like one of Streetsblog’s April 1st headlines?  How very very nice that this is not too good to be true.

  • Kaja

    Totally amazing. 

    One of the pleasures of pessimism is that, while one’s never disappointed, you’re occasionally pleasantly surprised.

  • Anonymous

    Kudos to him.  It can be difficult to take a thoughtful position when the conventional wisdom turns out to be wrong.  If only more people in leadership  were able to put intellectual honesty ahead of adopting easy talking points…

  • Mark

    Assembly Member Brennan:  Thanks.   It is nice to see such a thoughtful response.

  • MRB

    Sounds like a win for rational governance. I don’t expect politicians to be educated on everything, but it’s nice to see someone become educated and change their mind.

  • MRB

    that sounds cutesy, but unnecessary. there’s a bus that makes that route, and those folks with bikes can make the 6 minute ride.

  • wkgreen

    I suppose that Brennan changing his position to no longer encourage additional cars into the area is a positive development, but who is advocating for measures that would actually provide more access by cyclists and pedestrians to be able to get around or through this behemoth. As construction (and destruction) progresses, this nightmare is fast becoming reality. I’m still bummed that 5th Ave. is now and forever chopped off at Flatbush. Ft. Greene and Park Slope may as well be on different continents.

  • wkgreen

    I suppose that Brennan changing his position to no longer encourage additional cars into the area is a positive development, but who is advocating for measures that would actually provide more access by cyclists and pedestrians to be able to get around or through this behemoth. As construction (and destruction) progresses, this nightmare is fast becoming reality. I’m still bummed that 5th Ave. is now and forever chopped off at Flatbush. Ft. Greene and Park Slope may as well be on different continents.

  • Anonymous

    Great news! Now maybe Brennan will change his position on the Prospect Park West bike lane. Even though his own office’s survey showed overwhelming community support for the lane, last I heard, he spoke out against it. Bizarro.

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