Today’s news:

Unions, aesthetes dunked as Ratner plans pre-fab building at Yards

The Brooklyn Paper

From Gehry to pre-fab.

Developer Bruce Ratner will build the world’s tallest pre-fabricated tower as the first residential building inside his Atlantic Yards mega-project, dealing a blow to labor unions and architecture enthusiasts — whose original support for the development was conditioned on job creation and the promise of a mini city built by starchitect Frank Gehry.

Renderings released on Thursday by SHoP Architects reveal a 32-story building rising at the corner of Dean Street and Flatbush Avenue, just south of the under-construction Barclays Center.

Two identical-looking pre-fab buildings would come later — and one of them would be 50-plus stories, which would set a new record for modular buildings.

The first residential tower would be constructed using 930 pre-fabricated steel boxes known as modules that would be built in a factory and transported to Dean Street, where they would be bolted into place.

Ratner says that the method could cut costs by up to 25 percent because most of the work would be done in factories where union laborers earn less than they do at construction sites.

The design would also save money because it would take less time to build: the world’s tallest modular building, a 25-story dormitory in Wolverhampton, England, was built in less than one year.

Ratner said that construction on the first tower would begin early next year, with ground-breakings for the others following at six- to nine-month intervals after that — the first three residential construction in the stalled, 16-tower development.

That timetable could change, given that Ratner still hasn’t secured financing for the first tower, according to the developer’s spokesman, Joe DePlasco.

Ratner has also not sold the plan to unions, who loudly supported the project from the outset because of its promise of thousands of jobs. Those same union supporters, already angered by a shortfall of jobs at the project, have signaled that they oppose modular construction because it could cost hundreds of jobs.

On Thursday, however, union leaders appeared willing to have their members work for lower wages to move forward with the prefab model.

“We are in the process of attempting to reach an agreement on modular construction that will work for the building trades,” said Gary LaBarbera, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council.

Ratner still hasn’t committed to the modular design for the entire project. But longtime critics of Atlantic Yards slammed the plan, which came one day after seven residents filed a federal lawsuit against Ratner alleging that he falsely promised them jobs on the project.

“It’s another despicable slight to the community surrounding the project by eliminating more crucial jobs for residents,” said Councilwoman Letitia James (D–Fort Greene).

James and others felt similarly slighted by the notion that a project that was once meant to be an architectural showcase by legendary designer Frank Gehry will now comprise far more mundane pre-fab buildings.

Gehry was fired in 2009 in a cost-saving move.

Ratner’s spokesman said the developer will begin to seek financing for the first building, but declined to comment further.

Reach reporter Daniel Bush at dbush@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-2531.

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mike from GP says:
Is anybody surprised that Ratner went back on his word?
Nov. 18, 2011, 6:25 am
al pankin from downtown says:
yes the Frank Gehry buildings would have been a beautiful addition to the downtown area, thanks to the develop don't destroy years on endless lawsuits the window of opportunity to build those building was lost and this is what we're now getting...everyone else took their money and left.
Nov. 18, 2011, 7:51 am
steve from downtown says:
al's right. well put.
Nov. 18, 2011, 8:32 am
Bay Ridger from Bay Ridge says:
Yes, Al from downtown IS right.

And, don't complain about the buildings going up. If the alternative is NO buildings at all, then there are NO jobs, right? At least there is development at that site where we thought the first residence would take 10 years to build. Let's use some common sense here.

I wonder if this pre-fab factory will be in Brooklyn? The article doesn't state.
Nov. 18, 2011, 8:50 am
JudahSpechal from Bed Stuy says:
Point your fingers @ the Obstructionist. While you are at it ask, what have you done that hasn't benefitted Ratner? Looking back, I find it hard to believe that the Obstructionist, the Pols, & Ratner weren't on the same team since 2003. I supported this project for a # of reasons. I cannot with good conscious point my finger only at Ratner.
Nov. 18, 2011, 9:42 am
Kensington from Brooklyn says:
Ratner gives what Bloomberg believes Brooklyn deserves. Thanks for nothing.
Nov. 18, 2011, 9:43 am
harriet from brooklyn says:
Look at the Forest City Ratner website- every one of their properties is cheap, ugly, and highly reliant on public subsidies. Why should this one be any different?
Nov. 18, 2011, 9:51 am
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Occupy the construction site. While I'm unfamiliar with this project, it has many parallels to "New Domino" up in Williamsburg, and if so, this nonsense about DDB somehow being the closing of opportunity windows and the cause of "investors leaving with their money" is oversimplified scapegoating nonsense and not an examination of the facts. And as to the idea that if we don't build there'll be "nothing there at all" [and hence, no jobs] is such supreme irony and demonstrates profound ignorance on some of these commentors' parts [especially the ugly cheerleaders with their "well put" on what has been put on like a black eye], given the recent news, not a few links away, about lawsuits against Ratner ABOUT BROKEN PROMISES ON JOBS.

Please.
Nov. 18, 2011, 9:55 am
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
If anything, all the lawsuits in the world will never stop rapacity when the money and the power structure is in place to support such investments--for example, 5-10 years ago. THE REAL CLOSER OF THE WINDOWS OF OPPORTUNITY HERE IS THE CITY, STATE, NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL ECONOMY, which is driven by forces like Ratner and abetted by their many cheerleading apologists. To suggest that lawsuits by community groups is onerous, GIVEN ACTUAL HISTORY AND NOT THE PROJECTED RESENTFUL NONSENSE OF HATEFUL PERSONS WITH EMOTIONAL AGENDAS, is false. There could be a thousand DDBs, with a thousand thousand lawsuits--AS LONG AS THERE ARE UNIMAGINATIVE POLITICIANS IN PLACE, AND AS LONG AS THE ECONOMY IS STRONG, "development" [how Orwellian a term] has its day.

Blaming Ratner's duplicity on community responses, which last I checked are not precluded in our democracy, IS BEYOND THE PALE.
Nov. 18, 2011, 9:59 am
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
For example, up here in Williamsburg, banking consortium CPC/R has delayed by close to a year breaking ground on their "New Domino" development--the first phase of that construction was to involve inland development emphasizing senior and affordable housing. Why did they not break ground? Was it because of "community groups"? Doubtful. CPC/R faced negligible opposition and, in fact, received strong support from community groups in Williamsburg like Los Sures, El Puente and various other local pols, and even Steve Levin, initially opposing the plan, opted at the last second to vote along with his peers on the City Council to overwhelmingly approve "New Domino."

Was it perchance because of lawsuits? Ha! There was one suit alleged against CPC/R and that was settled by the courts in a few months time, and its findings had a negligible impact on CPC/R's timetable.

And yet, even though we have "community groups" and "lawsuits" and, hiding behind it all, those "nefarious liberals" and that "evil liberalism" in our stable of scapegoats to blame on CPC/R's delays, and it's pledge to also pre-fabricate [though it also has a star architect], and the fact that there is no authority binding them to stick to their affordable housing percentages, CPC/R is yet delayed and is bound to significantly change their plans.

And we have people like Al Pankin, Steve, BayRidger and others here who leap like as if their knees have been smashed with sledgehammers to cry "obstruction! obstruction! liberals and community groups are afoot!" even though the Emperor wears fine new clothing before them.

Behold the Sub-Men!
Nov. 18, 2011, 10:06 am
lisa from ps says:
Harriet,

You are incorrect.

Forest City Ratner was the developer behind the glorious new Frank Gehry building in downtown Manhattan 8 Spruce Street. It was deamed by the NYTimes to be one of the most beautiful buildings to be built in NYC in years. He also developed the new New York Times building, which is a resounding success.

We could have had that quality in Brooklyn, but you busybodies ruined it for everyone.
Nov. 18, 2011, 10:07 am
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
To "Lisa from ps," I wouldn't set my aesthetic standards by anything the NY Times writes about Real Estate because the NY Times' editorial on any real estate matter is clearly compromised by pandering to their main body of revenue [that's right, real estate]. Take for example, this infamous piece of reporting that depicted Williamsburg in 2002 [!!!] as a crime-ridden ghetto:
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/12/realestate/perpendicular-to-brunch-block-by-block.html?_r=3
The article's pro-real estate fixation and the required suspension of belief required to even read it was lambasted by L Magazine:
http://www.thelmagazine.com/TheMeasure/archives/2011/06/14/times-portrays-williamsburg-in-2002-as-crime-ridden-ghetto
Your view that the area is at a loss for the beauty that Gehry "could have" supplied is grossly belied by the neighborhood around you. Seriously, are you kidding? BROWNSTONE BROOKLYN IS GORGEOUS. Look at the Brooklyn branch of the Public Library, with it's somewhat Viennese secessionist style--BEAUTIFUL. So many gorgeous buildings, and you think it empty of what Gehry can offer? No, Lisa, it is not Harriet who is incorrect. It is you.
Nov. 18, 2011, 11 am
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Also, for a primer on gentrification, blight, aesthetics and architecture, check out the comments section on those two articles--disclosure: yours truly participates. Disabuse yourself.
Nov. 18, 2011, 11:01 am
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
I highly recommend for a survey of gentrification in Brooklyn with a history of community development that features some truly magnificent and beautiful buildings and "that quality in Brooklyn", The Invention of Brownstone Brooklyn by Suleiman Osman.

I mean, it's just preposterous, whether or not you support Ratner's plan, to suggest that Brooklyn lacks beauty. Take your self-loathing to Manhattan if you truly believe that nonsense.
Nov. 18, 2011, 11:05 am
Ellen from Ft. Greene says:
You are a moron, Dennis. Yes, Brownstone brooklyn is beautiful, but lots of new architecture is as well. The new Gehry highrise (Ratner developer) in downtown Manhattan is spectacular. Almost every architecture critic in the world has given it high praise. I'll take their words over some baffoon who links stupid articles and makes nasty comments on the brooklyn paper any day.
Nov. 18, 2011, 12:23 pm
Lenny from Park Slope says:
This pre-fab junk just can't happen. Call your politicians and organize.
Nov. 18, 2011, 12:25 pm
al pankin from downtown says:
I'm reading all these comments..Dennis sinneD is a pretty good typer, too bad he doesn't know how to get the facts right...what has he ever built or developed? peobably nothing..it's easy to complain and whine..(and type) just another looser.
Brooklyn had a hole in the ground for overy fifty years, what are all these folks with no vision complaing about?
it was people like him that stopped the Gehery project.
Nov. 18, 2011, 12:55 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
I take great interest every time the Stupidgentsia manifests, and measure Its qualities. A hostility to facts, while claiming their ownership, is consistent throughout. The madness and confabulation of threads is worthy of a novel of itself. I think I will adopt you Ellen and you Al Pankin as your character: anti-intellectual misanthropes who can't take what they give.
Nov. 18, 2011, 12:59 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
And Ellen, your thinking is lazy: I challenge you to back up your arguments, at least for your own mental health. Confabulation is epidemic here--if you corroborate your facts, you may find your seethe will calm.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:01 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
And Al, specifically to your mental health, the one who was "easy to complain and whine...(and type)" WAS YOU. I mean, you got up early in the morning, 7:51am this morning in fact, to post a whine and to whine a post. I'M RESPONDING TO YOUR COMPLAINT.

Please.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:10 pm
al pankin from downtown says:
Dennis is a looser....he can type until his fingers fall...what has he built? nothing but BS. does he work? or is this typing called work?
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:13 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
*loser

Ahem.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:21 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
On a more serious note, and again to your health, I would say it is not just work, it is THE work. Indeed, the world you know around you has depended on language and writing. Human consciousness springs from her linguistics. Everything you do is told through what you know, and everything that you know is retold in writing. Its significance to human society and history is greater than any pretend "labor" you and only you [can] imagine as something "great." The fact that you can pretend that way, and the fact that you can post your screed, is indebted to the thing that I also do. Maybe you need to learn some respect for It--It will help you be human.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:24 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
And while you with and through writing express your hostility against writing, you are what we call in high Christian circles 'Ialdabaoth.' Look it up. Don't be it.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:26 pm
Ina from Prospect Heights says:
No one cares what you think Dennis. That seems quite obvious from this thread here.

You like to hear yourself talk. That's it. Bye now.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:43 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
What is "quite obvious from your [post] there" is that in fact you do care what I think. Or you wouldn't have read my exercise in hearing myself, which you clearly want to hear, too. That's it. Bye now.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:47 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
But I admit, I do enjoy reading my own writing. Great for me, and for you, too, really. Too bad you don't know how good for you.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:48 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
It's fascinating how there is such a hostility to the exercise of writing and discussion here. No less than the past three persons [other than myself] posting have posted anti-intellectual attacks on reference material, writing, typing, and there are numerous examples on other threads. Al Pankin here is clearly related to "Jason from Downtown Brooklyn" elsewhere.

I thought Stupidgentsia was a joke, but I see it is actually a discrete demographic.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:52 pm
ted from PH says:
You have now made 15 comments on this post. Do you have a job? A life? A loved one? maybe even a dog to keep you company? You sound like a miserable person who likes to make nasty comments about other people and this isn't the first topic you have been so rude and ignorant.
Nov. 18, 2011, 1:54 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Ted from PH, I've been involved in vicious take-downs of ugly nasty brutish people here--I've never read about any of you, but clearly you are paying attention. How interesting that with the waves and waves of racism and other bigotries that have been exhausted here [see, for example, comment thread on "Crime is crazy bad in Fort Greene" by Kate Briquelet on Nov. 1, http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories/34/44/fg_88blotter_2011_11_04_bk.html]
that we haven't heard a peep from you. It seems to me you don't really care about "rudeness and ignorance," you care that PLU's are being given their comeuppance--People Like You. That, sir, smells like hypocrisy.

And let me tell you something, especially to the lot of you who pretend at "freedom," I can write 4000 comments if I want. Maybe not all here, maybe at the NY Times, maybe the NY Post, but if I want to write there's not a goddamn thing you can do about it.

You are now the fourth person who has made an attack, implicit or otherwise, on people exercising their free speech. And you think I'm ignorant?

Please.
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:01 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
And you call me "rude" while asking if I have a job while I am exercising free speech--what books on etiquette are YOU reading? Talk about ignorant.
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:03 pm
JudahSpechal from BedStuy says:
Well said, Ina from Prospect Heights. This cat is an expert on one thing it seems, "puffing like blowfish". His comments went personal fast. What's that about?

Any fair minded person would agree that the Obstructionist goal was lawsuit, lawsuits in hopes the develop gives up. They failed to realized $$politicians wanted this. They pushed the local $$politicians to oppose with them to give them credibility.

They even rented a few boldface name celebrities for the cause.

But all you blowfish on this board tell me.
What has Ratner lost for all of your obstruction?? Nothings! He's gained!

Let's review:

DDDB=$3mil
Brooklyn, NY = Nets, ugly arena, & prefab highrise (hit me on the head somebody),

Ratner = everything you claimed he was getting and more

Biggest Losers = Brooklyn, job seekers, Shop Designs
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:10 pm
JudahSpechal from BedStuy says:
ps.
next time try influence at teh table and not the courts. After all, it is your tax$$, the $$$pols r doling out
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:16 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
The claim that anyone can be painted an "obstructionist" is belied by the existence of a significant counter-proposal. Sure, the lawsuit is meant to stop Ratner's plan, but to leverage the counter-proposal--that is not obstructionism. In fact, "obstructionism" in the face of a counter-proposal is a polemical attack, so I don't know where you get the idea that I'm the one who attempted to bring it down to the personal. But I guess it all must be blowing fish, even when the fish stare back at you.
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:19 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
I'm a respondent here, not a deponent. You all have been deponents here, but you're all pretending you're being unfairly attacked out of the blue.

Please. For Real.
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:20 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Oh, and in case confabulation continues, here is the counter-proposal: http://dddb.net/php/community/extell.php
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:21 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
At the very least, Judah, you broke the streak of consecutive persons attacking free speech at four, as well as the persons asking about my intimate details--but hey, the only person being personal here is me. Go figure.
Nov. 18, 2011, 2:23 pm
Dave from Park Slope says:
Yes, blame those who've been telling you Ratner would do exactly this for the past eight years. That's the ticket.
Nov. 18, 2011, 3:45 pm
al pankin from downtown says:
Dear looser Dennis...this is really amusing...you must be stuck in a rut answering all these crummy emails & postings...you should run for political office..start off as dog catcher. then if you do a good job you can run for boro president and contribute to the welfare state of New York.
Nov. 18, 2011, 3:53 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Well said, Al, well said. I do feel looser after stretching minds today.
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:06 pm
Joey from Clinton Hills says:
I suspect Dennis is the 52 year old virgin.
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:07 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Close! I'm 40. But no, not a virgin. Sorry for you [or maybe someone you know?] But I wonder if we should return to talking about the article? Hmmmm. Maybe this is another head of the Stupidgentsia hydra, to call attention to my writing habits, my labor, my loved ones, my sex now--but I'm certain we can count on someone, maybe Judah from Bed-Stuy to pretend personal grievance? I know you think is "life" because I can drop a few hundred words in a few seconds while you're still trying to rev up your twitter accounts, but believe me, this is nothing to me. You're a distraction.
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:10 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
You're jealous I can drop narrative in my mind and out of my thoughts faster and deeper than you can relate, so hate if it comforts.
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:11 pm
Lana from bergen street says:
Dennis the menace gives Brooklyn a bad name. He's one of those overly aggressive, egotistical douchebags like all the rest in Williamsburg. They enjoying hearing themselves yammer away and think every morsel they utter deserves an award. In reality, you talk too much to make up for your small male sex organ. That is always the case with you Williamsburg dudes. Cue 10 more nonsensical posts from Dennis....
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:17 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Lana, you've really hurt me. And all the while I was wondering how you would fulfill me...YAWN. What exactly is aggressive to you, I'm intrigued by your further emasculation.

But yes, I confess. I do like the sound of my yammer nailing away. And I'm intrigued that you're thinking about my sex organ in all this, so we've definitely reached a continuity: writing, references, loved ones, pets, sex and now sex organ have been attacked rather than considering the article. Which will be next? Will you consider accompanying me to the sperm bank and checking my fertility?

Here Lana, something more interesting: what do you think of Ratner's pre-fabricated tower up there, some 40 or so comments above? Or are you still thinking about my tower?
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:22 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I wonder how many are going to be working on this? My guess is much less than the number of construction jobs Ratner said there would be. I knew his numbers were flawed from the start, and were really smaller than originally projected. Modular construction was nothing but another excuse to have less there when promised to many. BTW, those opposed to this project never said that they were going to leave the rail yards undeveloped, they actually had a plan known as the UNITY Plan, which not only build on the rail yards themselves, but allow the site to be given to multiple developers rather than just have one monopolizing the site rather than just, which the case for Ratner. Let's not forget that Garry Barnett, the head of Extell Developement and supported the UNITY Plan, offered triple the amount that Ratner gave to the MTA, but wasn't even allowed to meet with them despite that. Don't give me the claim that this project will give a major tax revenue, because that is completely bogus especially when we are subsidizing a private owner, which even the famous Queens Crapper never bought into. To those who believed that they were getting something big, you were just being used, and we told you so. Then again, you always had Ratner's word didn't you?
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:38 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Thank you, Tal--your observation closes, in my eyes, whether the project opponents were "obstructionists." I also agree that public subsidy of development through tax incentive goes against the idea of generating revenue for the city, but developers and their apologists are emphatic about its opposite.
Nov. 18, 2011, 4:50 pm
judahspechal from bedstuy says:
According to ny.curbed.com, these buildings will be done from scratch here in nyc. BK or Qns.

Pre-Fab are cool , depending on design. This should benefit the environment, will less on site construction. As long as those jobs are secure

Don't know what to say to you Dave from Park Slope.
Nov. 18, 2011, 6:54 pm
mike from GP says:
Wow, lots of Ratner-paid commenters on this site now.
Nov. 19, 2011, 5:22 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Judah, when are you going to wake up and realize that Ratner just used you to push the project forward only to break his promise. The three million you have mentioned earlier is just Goldstein himself, which was the deal he met with and used his own lawyer, not the groups. The reason why he had to do this settlement was because the state already seized his building, and despite owning his unit, he was feeling like a tenant. Even if he was going to settle it in court, he would only get mostly another month or so, but after that, his building was going to be demolished reguardless of the outcome of that. In other words, I have just debunked how he never became a sell out, and if anyone is a sell out, then look at BUILD, ACORN, or even other politicians like Marty himself, which are the real sell outs.
Nov. 20, 2011, 11:48 am
benti from heights says:
I don't get it, you on the Left have supported Pre-Fab for years because it helps recycle and save the planet...At least Ratner has the Balls to continue investing which creates real jobs unlike a few people that I won't name.
Nov. 20, 2011, 5:41 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
"Benti from heights"--nonsense. Stop claiming you know what those on the "Left" support. I challenge you to produce any evidence that is any concerted effort by the entire Left or even significant representatives or agents of the Left to support "pre-fabrication" by large scale development [especially of the luxury and conspicuous leisure kind] AT ANY POINT IN HISTORY.

HALF of the commentors on the thread, or more, have been reading their Orwell from left to right and right to left, impugning DDDB, "community groups," so-called "obstructionists" as though it is they, and not Ratner, who have not emerged from this theater with their promises intact.

They that you have impugned [the fabulous and winged "Left"--pure and sheer fantasy that invades the nightmares of people like Benti, Judah, Al Pankin without a shred of reality] have told you one thing, have always been consistent about what they have told you, and what they have told you has come to pass [namely, that Ratner is a rat fink liar].

They that you are defending [Ratner et al] have told you things and here we are, the exact opposite of what they have told you has come to pass.

If you can't see this, and you're still up to some bogus nonsense about what the "Left," "community groups" or "liberals" are up to, then you are worse than those who confronted Noah. And we know where they ended up.
Nov. 20, 2011, 5:58 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Here is a wiki on "pre-fabrication," so that we can stop with the silly subjective and prejudicial nonsense and actually get to the facts:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pre-fabricated_housing

Of course, many of you will make some claim how you trust your own twisted and perverse thinking [or lack thereof, really] precludes you from considering the facts.

Here's a fact you shouldn't ignore: God don't like ugly.
Nov. 20, 2011, 6 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
From the wiki:

"Houses have been built in one place and reassembled in another throughout history. Possibly the first advertised prefab house was the Manning Portable Cottage. A London carpenter, H. Manning, constructed a house that was built in components, then shipped and assembled by British emigrants. This was published at the time (advertisement, South Australian Record, 1837) and a few still stand in Australia.[1] One such is the Friends Meeting House, Adelaide.[2] The peak year for the importation of portable buildings to Australia was 1853, when several hundred arrived. These have been identified as coming from Liverpool, Boston and Singapore (with Chinese instructions for re-assembly).[3] In Barbados the Chattel house was a form of prefabricated building which was developed by emancipated slaves who had limited rights to build upon land they did not own. As the building were moveable they were legally regarded as chattels.[4]Another interesting building was the prefabricated hospital that the British Army deployed in 1855 during the Crimean War designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel with innovations in sanitation, ventilation and a flushing toilet.[5]
The world's first prefabricated, pre-cast panelled apartment blocks were pioneered in Liverpool. A process was invented by city engineer John Alexander Brodie, whose inventive genius also had him inventing the football goal net. The tram stables at Walton in Liverpool followed in 1906. The idea was not extensively adopted in Britain, however was widely adopted elsewhere, particularly in Eastern Europe.
Prefabricated homes were produced during the Gold Rush in the United States, when kits were produced to enable Californian prospectors to quickly construct accommodation. Homes were available in kit form by mail order in the United States in 1908.[6]
Prefabricated housing was popular during World War II due to the need for mass accommodation for military personnel. The United States used Quonset huts as military buildings, and in the United Kingdom prefabricated buildings used included Nissen huts and Bellman Hangars. 'Prefabs' were built after the war as a means of quickly and cheaply providing quality housing as a replacement for the housing destroyed during the war. The proliferation of prefabricated housing across the country was a result of the Burt Committee and the Housing (Temporary Accommodation) Act 1944. Under the Ministry of Works Emergency Factory Made housing programme, a specification was drawn up and bid on by various private construction and manufacturing companies. After approval by the MoW, companies could bid on Council led development schemes, resulting in whole estates of prefabs constructed to provide accommodation for those made homeless by the War and ongoing slum clearance[7]. Almost 160,000 had been built in the UK by 1948 at a cost of close to £216 million. The largest single prefab estate in Britain[8] was at Belle Vale (South Liverpool), where more than 1,100 were built after World War 2. The estate was demolished amid much controversy - the prefabs were very popular with residents - in the mid 1960s.

Amersham Prefab (COAM)-front room showing solid-fuel fire
Prefabs were aimed at families, and typically had an entrance hall, two bedrooms (parents and children), a bathroom (a room with a bath) — which was a novel innovation for many British at that time, a separate toilet, a living room and an equipped (not fitted in the modern sense) kitchen. Construction materials included steel, aluminium, timber or asbestos, depending on the type of dwelling. The aluminium Type B2 prefab was produced as four pre-assembled sections which could be transported by lorry anywhere in the country[9].

The Universal House (pictured left & lounge diner right) was given to the Chiltern Open Air Museum after 40 years temporary use. The Mark 3 was manufactured by the Universal Housing Company Ltd, Rickmansworth.
The United States used prefabricated housing for troops during the war and for GIs returned home. Prefab classrooms were popular with UK schools increasing their rolls during the baby boom of the 1950s and 1960s.
Many buildings were designed with a five-ten year life span, but have far exceeded this, with a number surviving today. In 2002, for example, the city of Bristol still had residents living in 700 examples[10]. Many UK councils are beginning to demolish the last surviving examples of World War II prefabs in order to comply with the UK government's Decent Homes Standard, due to come into effect by 2010. However, there has been a recent revival in prefabricated methods of construction in order to compensate for the United Kingdom's current housing shortage.[11]

[1] ^ Prefab: From Utilitarian Home To Design Icon, by Jim Zarroli, Morning Edition, September 15, 2008, NPR
[2] Channel 9 South Australia Pty Ltd > Postcards > Friend's Meeting House Retrieved 8 September 2011
[3] lewis, Miles (1985) "The Diagnosis of Prefabricated Buildings" Australian Historical Archaeology 3: 58–68
[4] Ali, Arif (1996). Barbados: Just Beyond Your Imagination. Hansib Caribbean. Hansib. ISBN 1-870-51854-3.
[5] Renkioi: Brunel's Forgotten Crimean War Hospital by Christopher Silver
[6] [1]
[7] [2]
[8] Belle Vale, Liverpool
[9] [3]
[10] Gillilan, Lesley (March 23, 2002). "The prefab four". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved May 22, 2010.
[11] [4]
[12] "Transportable Homes, Explained". Transportable home finance. Retrieved 2008-11-26.
[13] [5]
Nov. 20, 2011, 6:04 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
Nope, no mention of any sustained activity by the so-called "Left," which is really a bogeyman that people like Benti are using to drive people out of reason and logic with hysteria.

Later, the wiki mentions the identification of the "pre-fabricated house" with the modernist movement and it's new emphasis on "green," but none of that is identifiable with the Left. The new emphasis on "green" is hardly a Leftist initiative but is in fact the exact opposite tendency: the Rightist parasitic behavior of capitalizing on Leftist ideas and rendering them obsolescent.
Nov. 20, 2011, 6:07 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
And as to the idea that "Ratner" is "still investing": Holy and Might God in Heaven please shine light upon eyes sewn shut.

The fact that Ratner is turning to "pre-fabricated housing" suggests that he is not "still investing"--it shows he is doing the exact opposite, that his investment is lessening, withdrawing and being tempered.

So please, here's a link to 1984 by George Orwell:
http://books.google.com/books?id=yxv1LK5gyV4C&printsec=frontcover&dq=1984&hl=en&ei=ZonJTt_IIYXX0QG7tq3sDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=1984&f=false

Find yourself in It.
Nov. 20, 2011, 6:12 pm
Peter from ParkS Slope says:

Wow.Really UGLY buildings.
Thanks for raping Brooklyn
Mr Ratner.
You stink worse
than the sewers that are going to
overload from your terrible ill advised
project.
you and the Empire State Development
Corporation, plus all your paid off
enablerslike Marty Markowitz stink...
Nov. 21, 2011, 10:19 am
judahspechal from bedstuy says:
Oh how I wish I was cashing a FCR checking. Sorry just my opinion. Sorry I don't fall in line. If only it's true that everyone w/diff. viewpoint from mine was getting paid for said disagreement. That would mean I am always right.
Nov. 21, 2011, 10:31 pm

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