Jay-Z’s involvement with a group of investors
that purchased the New Jersey Nets won him accolades as a business man, but
some residents in the Prospect Heights section of Brooklyn are singing a different
Yesterday (March 28) almost 400 people turned
out to protest a planned 19,000 seat arena that developer Bruce Ratner, who led
the purchase of the Nets, has on the drawing board.
In addition to the arena, Ratner’s $2.5 billion
dollar plan includes 17 skyscrapers over 24 acres.
Almost 500 residents and businesses stand to
be displaced under the "eminent-domain" law, which is the right of
a government to appropriate private property for public use.
Patti Hagan, spokesperson for the Prospect Heights
Action Coalition, has organized protests. Hagan completed a door-to-door survey
of the neighborhood to determine the population that would be effected.
Hagan pointed out that 870 people who lived in
the area would be condemned and more than 500 businesses would be driven out.