Planned garages at Yankee Stadium bring controversy

Controversy is rising over new parking garages coming to the new Yankee Stadium.The city says the garages will take cars off the street during games.

THE BRONX - Controversy is rising over new parking garages coming to the new Yankee Stadium.

The city says the garages will take cars off the street during games. The city?s Economic Development Corporation (EDC) reports that the area around Yankee Stadium will eventually have a total of 9,000 parking spaces.

However, one watchdog group says tax breaks for the project will benefit big investors, while Bronx residents will lose out.

The EDC says the parking garage project will cost taxpayers nothing. That is because most of the money for the garages will come from triple tax exempt bonds, $219 million out of the roughly $310 million needed for the project, to be exact. It also means that big investors don?t have to pay taxes on interest earned from the bonds.

Despite tax concerns, not all residents agree that the garages will be such a good idea. Bettina Damina of the watchdog group Good Jobs New York has her doubts.

?This area has some of the highest asthma rates and lowest car ownership rates in the city, so bringing in a publicly financed parking garage ? one has to question where the public benefits are,? Damina says. ?When you hear ?civic facility project? you think of schools, hospitals and recreational centers ? you don?t think parking garage for the wealthiest sports franchise in the U.S.?

One watchdog group says this is a cheap way to finance a project that?s usually reserved for civic faculty projects.

A public hearing will be held September 6 at the EDC, located at 110 William St. in Manhattan. It will take place on the fourth floor and will begin at 10 a.m.

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