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January 28, 2008

Court papers hint at Nets arena finance woes

The New York Post reports today that New Jersey Nets owner Bruce Ratner has admitted in court documents that his $4 billion Atlantic Yards project is facing financing problems:

The papers, filed Friday by Ratner's firm in an attempt to speed up the appeal process in a lawsuit by project opponents, reveal for a first time that the biggest development in Brooklyn's history is in jeopardy because of dragging litigation and a slumping fiscal market.
"The credit markets are in turmoil at this time ... There is a serious question as to whether, given the current state of the debt market, the underwriters will be able to proceed with the financing for the arena while the appeal is pending," one affidavit says.

Take this with a big grain of salt, given that Ratner is claiming it in an attempt to get a lawsuit dismissed - the New York Yankees, don't forget, threatened to move out of the city if a similar legal challenge against their stadium wasn't dismissed. Still, there have been questions about how the softening housing market will affect the project for a while now, real estate experts have questioned both its cost and revenue projections, and Ratner's own finances aren't looking too great right now either. The big question then becomes, if Ratner clears away the lawsuits but can't come up with the cash, does he back out of the whole project, or just the housing component, leaving Brooklyn with just a basketball arena and a really ugly skyscraper?

COMMENTS

the claim is made in an attempt to expedite an appeal schedule, not in an attempt to dismiss the appeal.

Posted by brokeland on January 28, 2008 01:59 PM

Well, to get an appeal dismissed more quickly. But fair enough.

Posted by Neil on January 28, 2008 07:39 PM

The rat is a smart man. The arena will be built in brooklyn.

Posted by dan on January 28, 2008 10:53 PM

Hope this project blows up, Nets should move to Newark's Prudential Center

Posted by Chris on February 17, 2008 02:10 AM

"Hope this project blows up, Nets should move to Newark's Prudential Center"

Here here Chris! I agree!

Posted by Daniel Francis on February 18, 2008 05:11 PM

The project won't blow up .The nets will be in brooklyn in 2010 whatcha gonna do when the nets are in brooklyn not at the prudential in new jersey.Sorry have a nice day.

Posted by dan on February 22, 2008 10:02 PM

If the deal didnt go through the nets would be moving to long island not newark sorry guys .Ididn't want to burst your bubble but ratner would sell the team to wang .David Stern doesn't want the nets in jersey anymore. It will be either long island or brooklyn. Mike and the mad dog don't know the facts only rumors that they hear. Iwouldn't mind seeing the nets back on long island again with the islanders.

Posted by dan on February 22, 2008 10:56 PM

I don't think Ratner cares about the Nets...they are a small part of his real estate scheme. If the arena falls though he will sell the team.

Posted by Bob on February 27, 2008 03:06 PM

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