BROOKLYN - Supporters of the controversial Atlantic Yards development project in Downtown Brooklyn staged a rally at Brooklyn Borough Hall on Thursday.

Hundreds of union workers, retired Nets players and housing advocates gathered to celebrate Brooklyn Day and and speak in support of the $4 billion project that has been spearheaded by developer Forest City Ratner.

Supporters hope it will boost the borough, bringing money, condominiums and basketball back to the area.

Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz appeared at the rally, saying that Atlantic Yards is Brooklyn?s future, and that no one is going to stop it from becoming a reality.

Markowitz also added that the project is going to bring affordable housing, thousands of union jobs and the New Jersey Nets basketball team.

Members of ?Develop, Don?t Destroy? quietly watched as the rally progressed. They have been speaking out against the Atlantic Yards project from the beginning, staunchly opposing demolition and land seizures needed to get the development under way.

Protesters said that Thursday?s rally, complete with free T-shirts, live performances and the Nets drumline, was nothing but a desperate attempt by Forest City Ratner to re-sell the project that was supposed to be a done deal nearly five years ago.