NY Daily News: Brooklyn Bridge Park future in limbo after upscale condo tax bill slash

Daniel L. Squadron

June 17, 2011

By Erin Durkin, New York Daily News

The City's $1 million reduction of an upscale condo's tax bill leaves Brooklyn Bridge Park with a maintenance shortfall.

There's more money trouble for Brooklyn Bridge Park after one of the fancy condo buildings officials were counting on to pay for park upkeep got its city tax bill slashed.

Luxury condo owners at One Brooklyn Bridge Park got a $1 million chopped off the bill - by mounting a challenge to their city tax bill and successfully getting it lowered from $1.8 million to $800,000 a year.

That leaves a big hole in the park's maintenance budget, which officials voted yesterday to fill by dipping into reserves.

"I think it's outrageous that One Brooklyn Bridge Park gets to reduce their taxes," said Sandy Balboza of the Atlantic Avenue Betterment Association. "There was an agreement for this property to pay [for park upkeep]."

The news comes as officials are wrangling about whether to build more luxury housing in the gleaming new waterfront park.

Housing boosters say the shortfall means more buildings are needed to generate cash - but critics say it shows the condo towers aren't a reliable source of funds.

"This shows yet again that we need to come together to agree on a new, innovative funding stream that allows the park to reach its potential," said state Sen. Daniel Squadron (D-Brooklyn Heights).

Representatives for the 449-unit condo building, where homes go for as much as $3.5million, did not return calls for comment.

Click here to continue reading this story