SBD/March 14, 2012/Facilities
Barclays Center Completion Still On Schedule, As Almost All The Steel Is Up
Forest City Ratner Chair & CEO Bruce Ratner participated in the N.Y. TIMES’ “The 30-Minute Interview” with Vivian Marino and said “virtually all the steel is up” at Barclays Center and the venue is "virtually all enclosed.” Ratner said of the arena, “Basically we’re working on the interiors. Some parts of it are even ahead of schedule. It’ll finish on time. Building -- compared to getting there -- was relatively easy. I didn’t think it would take this long -- I thought it would take five, maybe six, years. It’s eight years.” Ratner said of selling his majority stake in the Nets to Mikhail Prokhorov, “It was necessary because we had the recession. We had expected to finance much of this project, then all of a sudden it was much less financing, and so a lot of equity had to go in. To raise that equity we had to sell a portion of the team and the arena” (N.Y. TIMES, 3/14). Ratner last week on PBS’ “Charlie Rose” referred to himself as a “civic developer,” because his company does a “lot of civic projects, and every project that we do has to have some civic component." Rose said Ratner and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz “have a very good relationship,” and the two “seem to be in lockstep about wanting to change Brooklyn.” Ratner said Barclays Center will be “one of the most important civic buildings built in the city” and the “most important arena built in the last half-century in this country.” Rose added, “It’s a place that basketball people will love” (“Charlie Rose,” PBS, 3/9).
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BLACKBIRD FLY: Barclays Center and Long Island Univ.-Brooklyn have formed a partnership that includes athletics, education, community, and brand-building platforms. LIU-Brooklyn will play at least four men's basketball games at the arena every season through the length of the partnership. The facility will also host five one-hour bi-weekly classes annually for students in LIU-Brooklyn's sports journalism/management classes. Those classes will include Barclays Center and Nets execs serving as guest lecturers (Nets).