Dan Bilefsky of The New York Times describes the Willets Point area as "a 61-acre expanse of junkyards and auto-repair shops so squalid that local business owners compare it to Iraq."
The proposed redevelopment plan would include new apartments, stores, restaurants, office buildings, and a hotel (at an estimated total cost of $3 billion).
From NY Times article:
"Opponents of the Bloomberg plan counter that the project is speculative and environmentally unsound. They insist that the area, however bedraggled, has become an Ellis Island of sorts for a newly arriving underclass that depends on it to get by. They also complain bitterly that the city is shutting down thriving small businesses that have nowhere else to go."
"Officials said they planned to proceed with the project, including seizing property, if necessary, by the middle of 2012."