A proposed waterfront redevelopment would have created thousands of jobs and cost the city nothing.
In an echo of last year’s Amazon debacle, a proposed economic development project slated to bring 20,000 new jobs and $100 million in tax revenue to New York City is dead. Again the city’s progressive politicians are to blame.
Last month the owners of the 35-acre Industry City site, a 16-building warehouse complex in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park neighborhood, withdrew their rezoning request rather than let the City Council deny it. Crime and unemployment are soaring, residents are fleeing amid the pandemic, the city’s budget deficit has topped $9 billion, and as many as a third of its small businesses have closed permanently. But New York’s elected representatives think the Big Apple’s real problem is gentrification.
The developers would have built desperately needed manufacturing, commercial and retail space in an economically distressed area tucked between the waterfront and Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. But it also included hotels, restaurants and nice apartments, so politicians decided to kill it. Even some members of the Democrat-dominated council don’t understand why the project had to die. “The potential for mass job creation at Industry City, a rare oasis of manufacturing, is one of the few glimmers of hope in a moment of despair,” wrote Councilmen Richie Torres and Donavan Richards in an August op-ed.
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