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Nets arena in Brooklyn gets green light

March 4, 2005 at 4:08 PM

NEW YORK, March 4 (UPI) -- The controversial plan to build a new arena for the NBA's New Jersey Nets in Brooklyn has gotten the green light.

The city's Economic Development Corp. and Empire State Development have signed a memo of understanding with developer Forest City Ratner, kicking off the formal public review for the $2.5 billion plan, state and city officials said.

The memo makes only minor changes to billionaire developer Bruce Ratner's proposal, which calls for a $430 million, Frank Gehry-designed arena as well as 17 high-rise office and apartment buildings, the New York Daily News said Friday.

The number of apartments reportedly has been increased from the originally proposed 4,500 units by reducing some of the 2.4 million square feet of office and retail space.

Ratner had also asked the city and state for $450 million in infrastructure subsidies to the 21-acre site, but that figure has shrunk to about $200 million, officials said.

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