Straight from the "Get-off-of-our-lawns" files: Forest City Ratner, developers of the huge Atlantic Yards project, doesn't want groups of teens hanging out around the Atlantic Terminal mall they operate in Fort Greene. The mall has a policy that groups of four or more people under 21 years old and unaccompanied by a parent are not allowed to linger at the mall. According to Jesse Tron of the International Council of Shopping Centers, the policy is unusually harsh, “more all-encompassing” than others around the country, and “more restrictive” of young shoppers.
The rules have been in place since the mall opened, but has been enforced very erratically. Advocates of the plan cite the incident at Buffalo Wild Wings last year, when shootings occured over delicious deals, as one reason why the crackdown is necessary. But things seem to have escalated recently, with guards having been told to step it up and turn away more teens. According to the Times:
On Thursday, however, just after 3 p.m., some guards at the Atlantic Terminal entrances asked for ID and then turned teenagers away, even some in groups of less than four. Stephanie Cineus, 15, a junior at a nearby high school, tried to get in with a friend, but both were barred from entering.
Some teens contacted Councilwoman Letitia James, who represents the area; she allegedly wrote back, "I am meeting with management next week to resolve this illegal ban."