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A group of unemployed construction workers is suing Atlantic Yards developer Bruce Ratner to recover lost wages for jobs that they claim they were promised but never received at the $5-billion Prospect Heights megaproject.
The workers will announce the federal lawsuit this morning in Fort Greene, steps from the under-construction Barclays Center.
Ratner once boasted that the 22-acre project would create 1,500 jobs per year over a 10-year buildout, but roughly 700 people are currently at work on the arena.
The paltry numbers have prompted disgruntled workers — who backed the project during its approval process five years ago — to rally regularly for jobs.
The 19,000-seat arena will be completed next summer, but the larger 16-tower development is on hold. Ratner has vowed to begin one residential building next year.
A spokesman for the developer was not immediately available for comment on Tuesday night.
Councilwoman Letitia James (D–Fort Greene), a longtime foe of the project, said she sympathized with the workers.
“They were led to believe that they would get a job at Atlantic Yards,” James said. “They feel betrayed.”Reach reporter Daniel Bush at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (718) 260-8310. Follow him at twitter.com/dan_bush.
©2011 Community Newspaper Group
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