$1B Hudson Yards Latest Development Hung Up by Rough Economy

The gloomy economy has caused yet another hiccup for a major development project. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority revealed that the partnership period of conditional designation with Related Cos. and Goldman Sachs, the team the MTA selected to develop the $1 billion Hudson Yards project in New York City, has been extended one year beyond its originally agreed upon finalization date that was not to exceed Jan. 31. The announced delay involves the contract, not the development of Hudson Yards, as a construction schedule was never set. “We’re still moving through the government and zoning approval process so we can’t set a date,” a spokesperson with the Related Cos. told CPN. Elliot Sander, executive director & CEO of the MTA, said in a prepared statement that the agreement “acknowledges current economic realities without derailing our partnership on this important site for New York’s future.” The MTA chose the Related-Goldman proposal for the development of the air space above the eastern and western rail yards on Manhattan’s Far West Side in May, soon after negotiations with Tishman Speyer for its development proposal unraveled. Related/Goldman’s plan for the 13-acre eastern yard calls for nearly 1.7 million square feet of residential space, including affordable housing, approximately 3.6 million square feet of commercial space, 565,000 square feet of retail and a 265,000-square-foot hotel. Plans for the 13-acre western yard include approximately 2.6 million square feet of residential accommodations that will also offer affordable units, 1.9 million square feet of commercial space, 192,000 square feet of retail and a 120,000-square-foot school. While the planning process continues for Hudson Yards amid the contract delay, many other large development endeavors were too far gone to avoid the ramifications of the economy’s downward spiral. Recent financing failures have just caused construction to come to a screeching halt on Shelbourne Development’s 150-story Spire condominium and Teng & Associates 90-story mixed-use Waterview Tower in Chicago.