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Gehry's massive Brooklyn scheme wins go-ahead

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Frank Gehry's hugely controversial Atlantic Yards project in Brooklyn, New York, has been given final approval by the state authorities, despite massive opposition.

The 750,000m 2project, designed in conjunction with landscape architect Laurie Olin, is one of the biggest schemes to be undertaken in the city's history, and will see more than $4 billion (£2 billion) being pumped into it.

Gehry, who is also facing opposition in Brighton for his King Alfred scheme, is no stranger to controversy, and was asked to shrink the project's tallest tower by more than 30m, but critics still say the reductions are too modest.

The project is backed by developer Forest City Ratner Companies, which plans to build a residential housing complex with 6,400 units, a basketball arena for local team the New Jersey Nets, and office space.

In a statement, president of Forest City, Bruce Ratner, said: 'Three years ago we joined the mayor and officials throughout Brooklyn, to unveil a work in progress.

'We're excited to have completed the public review process and are thrilled at the prospect of breaking ground and making Atlantic Yards a reality.'

The review was the last hurdle for the scheme to tackle, and the project will now get under way in the New Year.

by Richard Vaughan

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