Stadium ruling deflates Dolan
NEW YORK — A New York State court threw Chuck Dolan’s Cablevision for a loss when it ruled Thursday that a proposed stadium on Manhattan’s West Side for the NFL’s New York Jets could go forward, and that there was no bid-rigging.
Cablevision, which violently opposes the new stadium because it could take business away from the Dolan-owned Madison Square Garden a few blocks away, vowed that it and other stadium critics would file an appeal.
Gov. George Pataki and Mayor Michael Bloomberg, both cheerleaders for the stadium, are pushing hard to get approval before July 6, the date the Intl. Olympic Committee chooses one of five cities — New York, Paris, London, Madrid and Moscow — to host the 2012 Olympic Games.
Pataki and Bloomberg insist that approval of the stadium is vital to the city’s chances of receiving the nod from the IOC. Political and community opponents say they’d be willing to agree to a stadium for 2012 if the IOC gives its blessing to New York, although, like Dolan, they’d prefer a location other than the West Side.
The stadium is still facing hard questions from Joseph L. Bruno, majority leader of the state Senate, and Speaker of the Assembly Sheldon Silver. They both have to OK the stadium, so there’s no guarantee the Jets will get the needed approval before July 6.
The Thursday decision in the Jets’ favor came from Herman Cahn, a justice of the state supreme court, who ruled in a 37-page opinion that the Metropolitan Transit Authority, which approved the stadium, did not act “improperly or unreasonably.”
Community groups and some editorial writers oppose the stadium because it would require at least $600 million in taxpayer money, which, they say, could be better used for schools, housing and repair of the crumbling roads, bridges and tunnels throughout New York.