From the NY Times:
It is one of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s signature projects — the sweeping transformation of Willets Point, a slice of Queens that has long been among the city’s most neglected pieces of real estate. And a little over a year ago, it seemed like a done deal.
The City Council approved the proposal, which would sweep aside the car-repair shops, junkyards and small factories in the shadow of Citi Field to make room for 5,500 apartments, parks, office buildings, stores, restaurants and a hotel.
Many of the largest property owners agreed to sell to the city, and the city could use eminent domain to force out those who refused.
But a convergence of a Park Avenue lawyer known for toppling big projects, a sawdust maker bent on keeping the family business where it has been for decades, and a pair of highway ramps that exist only on paper threatens to doom Mr. Bloomberg’s grand vision.
The ramps, which would connect Willets Point to the Van Wyck Expressway, seemed like a minor detail at first and never came up during the noisy public hearings before the Council’s vote.
But, as it turns out, they are critical to the project’s survival.
And Claire's survival!
And Wellington's survival!
And Wilpon's survival!
But if I were a bettor, I would put my money on these guys.
Now the cat's out of the bag on the money spent to acquire a handful of properties thus far...