Exploring Brooklyn Community

Friday, April 30, 2010

Show creator and host Al Letson looks at Brooklyn's evolution and the conflict over the Atlantic Yards development in the first episode of the second season of State of the Re:Union.

State of the Re:Union airs every weekend in May on WNYC. Find out more and see the schedule!


Al Letson

Comments [11]

Norman Oder from Brooklyn, NY

The segment, though a sincere effort to air different voices--two opponents, one supporter--wound up disappointingly shallow.

Letson concludes: "But those who oppose Atlantic Yards will tell you that the jobs are a pipe dream, that the work created won't be sustainable middle-class building careers, and they may be right, but I wonder if it matters. In these tough times, when families are losing their homes and unemployment is through the roof, isn't any job better than none?"

That's not a very incisive analysis. More here:

May. 01 2010 07:44 AM
Norman Oder from Brooklyn

Al Letson talks about how he came in against Atlantic Yards but after talking to opponents and proponents he came out with a more "nuanced" sense, given the evident sincerity of both.

Well, there's sincerity and there's trustworthiness:

Apr. 30 2010 01:48 PM
dboy from nyc

jonn K. from NY:

I'd have to agree; "... rich money grubbing real estate whores." of all colors and ethnicities!

It is this same greed that perpetuates abhorrent, cost-efficient architectural eye sores!

See the Hasidic development of Williamsburg.

Apr. 30 2010 12:00 PM
John from Staten Island

I think Brian should have an interview with the editor of the site: Field of Schemes. He has stories of sport arenas and these deals which are happening throughout the country

Apr. 30 2010 11:51 AM
dboy from nyc

"Sentimentality", Brian, good observation. I don't believe the Atlantic Yards is necessarily a good, example of responsible evolution. The use of eminent domain in this example is dubious, at best. But, I think we need to be cognizant of gentrification's evil sentimental twin of Disney-esque "capsulation" which retards vital change.

Time and life is dynamic, they move forward and architecture and community should to. Otherwise you end-up with an ersatz, quaint historical version of history.

London is an excellent example of a city that responsibly allows past and future to nicely co-exist.

Landmark can be a form of architectural fascism.

Apr. 30 2010 11:50 AM
jeff from Greenpoint

I've been in NYC for 11 years and in that time I've seen MANY changes around the city.
In particular, I used to live in Williamsburg off the Lorimer stop on the L train and used to walk home down a desolate and sometimes dangerous Union Ave. At the time, there wasn't much there besides a few warehouses. It was somewhat dangerous at night and I actually was chased home a few times.
Now, there are bars, restaurants, a health food grocery and luxury condos. Wow!

Apr. 30 2010 11:49 AM
Robert from NYC

Frankly, I don't really care what's going on in Brooklyn, never have never will.

Apr. 30 2010 11:47 AM
jonn K. from NY

That caller who said that it was the fault of white people can go kill himself.
This is in part Jay-Z's fault.
I am white, and I make what should be considered a decent salary, yet I cannot afford to live in any burrough other than Staten Island.
It's not the fault of whites, it's the fault of rich money grubbing real estate whores.

Apr. 30 2010 11:47 AM

"Ditmas Park" was actually Ditmas Park for a long time. It was a planned community within Flatbush dating from the turn of the twentieth century.

Apr. 30 2010 11:46 AM
The Truth from Becky

Yes, there is change in Brooklyn, for the good. My family simpy renovated their home to keep up with the changes and got new tenants who are also interested in change.

Apr. 30 2010 11:44 AM
John from Staten Island

The speaker on the introduction to this segment reminded me of the movie "Smoke" about a Brooklyn shop owner. Believe the story was written by Paul Auster from Brooklyn

Apr. 30 2010 11:35 AM

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