Hyper local

This is how hyper local will work — when people care. From today’s Times:

When a state agency released plans for studying the environmental impact of the proposed Atlantic Yards project, a vast residential, commercial and arena development near Downtown Brooklyn, the response from critics was swift, brutal — and largely online…. But Atlantic Yards may well be the first large-scale urban real estate venture in New York City where opposition has coalesced most visibly in the blogosphere.

  • John

    If you want to go back and do a file search of the New York Times from 50 years ago and you’ll find the exact same opposition to a Robert Moses plan in 1956 to develop Atlantic Yards with a then-revolutionary domed stadium proposal for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

    That one I believe was a year or two before the Internet became popular, and unlike Bruce Ratner’s current effort to retool the neighborhood for his new development and arena for t he New Jersey Nets, didn’t involve as widescale a displacement. But public opposition scuddled the plan in less than a year, even when Moses was near the height of his unelected power in New York, and in less than a year after that defeat, Walter O’Malley was headed for Los Angeles.

    (I’m agnostic about Rattner’s plan itself — that area of Brooklyn does need a revival, but the efforts to force people out of the homes does seem pretty heavy-handed. However, localism before and after the debut of world wide web in Brooklyn has been pretty strong, and in this case, the more things change, the more they stay the same.)

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  • In regards to John’s reference to Robert Moses and Walter O’Malley, Roger Kahn sets the record straight in his book about the Brooklyn Dodgers, “The Boys of Summer,” page 429 [emphasis added]:

    “Currents met at the crossing of Atlantic and Flatbush avenues downtown. Two subway lines join there, alongside the Long Island Railroad Depot, the tallest building in Brooklyn and the Academy of Music. But along Atlantic Avenue wholesale meat markets led toward slums. Condemnation proceedings begun by the Sports Authority could clear land there. O’Malley peddled Ebbets Field for $3 million, sold two minor league parks at $1 million and announced that he was prepared to put the $5 million in to a stadium in downtown Brooklyn. Robert Moses, politician, urban planner, said the stadium would create “a China wall of traffic.” Until he measured Moses’ power and found it greater than his, O’Malley says he did not intend to move the Dodger,

    The irony is that even the master of unintended consequences, NY’s masterbuilder Robert Moses, could forsee one of the most serious impacts of putting a sports venue at Flatbush and Atlantic.

  • The meat market was north of Atlantic Avenue, which is north of the railyards. The only plan to develop the railyards specifically came from Baruch College. See http://atlanticyardsreport.blogspot.com/2006/03/behind-empty-railyards-40-years-of.html.

  • I am now finishing a book chapter about computer-mediated PR in which I will use describe how corporations and organizations are using high tech methods for public relations concerning environmental issues and causes.

    Could you please let me know of any corporations or organizations that are using blogs as a PR tool to present and discuss environmental issues such as nature preservation, global warming, water quality protection, saving habitats, etc.??

    I need to hear from you quite soon on this, if that’s possible.

    I would very much like to include them in the book chapter.

    Thanks in Advance and best regards,


    Dr. Ric Jensen
    [email protected]