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City Narrows Field to Design the Hudson Yards Boulevard

According to the New York Post, the City has selected 5 design teams for a competition to design the Hudson Yards mid-block boulevard:

The firms have until the middle of July to come up with their designs for the project, which will run between 10th and 11th avenues from 33rd to 42nd Streets as part of the city's Hudson Yards plan. A final selection will be made in September.

The park and boulevard will be part of what is expected to include 20 acres of open space that will include plazas and parks over the rail yards.

Financing for the mid-block boulevard and park is coming from a $3 billion bond that is also funding the $2 billion extension of the 7 subway line to 11th Avenue and 33rd Street.

The five design teams were picked from 18 applicants.

Note re: 7 subway extension - the stated project budget has not changed since 2003, but revised projections from the MTA expect the extension to cost at least $3.3 billion. The City intends to pay 100% of the cost of this extension, which is unusual (subway extensions are normally funded significantly by the Federal Government and the State). This means that the subway extension alone will cost more than the existing $3 billion bond issue.

Question of the Day: How will the City pay for a $1 billion boulevard plus the $3.3 billion subway extension with only $3 billion in hand?

To complicate matters: The Hudson Yards deal with Related Companies requires the City to pay penalties if the subway extension is not built by 2014. And Related can get out of the contract without penalty if the extension is not built by 2020.

To further complicate matters: The City will rely on revenues from Hudson Yards development to service the bonds.

Read “5 Compete in $1B City Design Job," by Tom Topousis for The New York Post


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