x

Society

New York Inaugurates its $25 Billion Mini-City, Hudson Yards (Pics, Vids)

March 13, 2019

NEW YORK (AP) — A towering sculpture called Vessel — made up of 2,500 twisting steps the public can climb — is scheduled to open Friday as the visual centerpiece of Hudson Yards, a $25 billion urban complex on Manhattan’s West Side that is the city’s most ambitious development since the rebuilding of the World Trade Center.

When fully complete, the 28-acre (11-hectare) site will include 16 towers of homes and offices, a hotel, a school, the highest outdoor observation deck in the Western Hemisphere, a performing arts center and a shopping mall that also opens Friday.

About half the complex is complete, with the rest scheduled to be done by 2025. The opening of the $200 million Vessel and the landscape around it will likely bring a wave of tourists to a rebuilt corner of the city that was previously characterized by a huge rail yard, parking lots and weedy sidewalks once known as a cruising ground for prostitutes.

The 3,200-ton structure was assembled from steel-and-concrete pieces manufactured in Monfalcone, Italy. Accommodating 600 visitors at a time, it’s 150 feet (46 meters) tall and rises from a narrow point at its base to a width of 150 feet at its peak.

“We needed to have a centerpiece, we needed to have an attraction, a destination — something where you would say, ‘I’ll meet you at,'” says Jay Cross, president of Related Hudson Yards, which partnered with the Oxford Properties Group to develop the site. “And we thought monumental art is the way to go.”

The concept was to make something “participatory,” he said of the sculpture, created by British designer Thomas Heatherwick. “The idea was that everybody would just come in and climb it, be able to propose marriage up here, or run up and down, do whatever they want.”

Admission is free, but people can get timed tickets in advance to avoid a line to enter.

The developers, including Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, have billed their project as the most expensive private development in U.S. history.

High-power tenants planning to move into Hudson Yards office space include CNN, the luxury goods maker Coach, WarnerMedia and the BlackRock money manager. About 60 percent of nearly 300 luxury apartments on the market have been sold, with hundreds more coming up.

The observation deck is set to open later this year on the 100th story of one of the city’s tallest buildings. The wedge-shaped deck will be 100 feet (30 meters) above the one on the 86th floor of the Empire State Building, with a bird’s eye view of the New York skyline and the Atlantic Ocean.

The arts center, a 200,000-square foot (18,580-square meter) building called The Shed , is scheduled to open April 5. It includes an outer shell that can deploy over an adjacent public plaza on huge wheels to expand the size of the performance space.

Also opening Friday is a seven-story mall called the Shops at Hudson Yards, with more than 100 stores offering brands from Cartier, Stuart Weitzman and Manhattan’s first Neiman Marcus to chains like H&M and Zara. There will also be a slew of dining choices including a Shake Shack, Neiman Marcus’s signature Zodiac restaurant and celebrity chefs’ restaurants.

Hudson Yards is part of a stretch of construction along the Hudson River from Columbus Circle to the World Trade Center that is gradually nudging New York’s power-and-money epicenter west from midtown Manhattan.

Make no mistake, Hudson Yards is aimed mostly at residents with deep pockets — one-bedroom apartments are renting for more than $5,000 a month, about $2,000 more than the average Manhattan one-bedroom apartment. A two-story penthouse is selling for $32 million. And although 10 percent of the residential space has been reserved for affordable housing, that applies to people whose annual income is still above poverty level.

It took decades for this real estate saga to take shape.

Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg had wanted the West Side rail yards to become the site of a domed stadium that could host the 2012 Olympics and later be a home for the NFL’s Jets, but political and logistical hurdles ultimately killed those plans in favor of a mixed-use, commercial and residential neighborhood.

The developers broke ground on the project in 2012, building over the tracks of the Long Island Rail Road that connect with Penn Station, the city’s busiest transportation hub. In an impressive engineering feat, massive columns support a platform surrounding the buildings and covering the tracks.

To lure investors, Hudson Yards is getting a government tax break plus other assistance running into billions of dollars that also financed the extension of a subway line.

In return, government officials hope the more than 50,000 estimated jobs created at Hudson Yards will justify the financial support.

By: Verena Dobnik, Associated Press

RELATED

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A serial killer who admitted he was responsible for the deaths of five Alaskans, including committing the first when he was only 14, has died in an Indiana prison, officials said.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

Alberto, Season’s First Named Tropical Storm, Dumps Rain on Texas and Mexico, Which Reports 3 Deaths

TAMPICO, Mexico (AP) — Tropical Storm Alberto rumbled toward northeast Mexico early Thursday as the first named storm of the season, carrying heavy rains that left three people dead but also brought hope to a region suffering under a prolonged, severe drought.

DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip  — Israeli forces shelled tent camps for displaced Palestinians outside Gaza's southern city of Rafah on Friday, killing at least 25 people and wounding another 50, according to the territory's health officials and emergency workers.

LEIPZIG, Germany  — Kylian Mbappé watched from the substitutes’ bench as France and the Netherlands finished 0-0 in a heavyweight European Championship clash on Friday.

NEW YORK – Greek-American long-distance runner Alexi Pappas was featured in Vogue magazine for her latest role as an ambassador for the outdoor brand Merrell and a film project with Merrell and Vogue.

ATHENS - A total of 64 fires broke out in mixed farm and forest land in the last 24 hours, with 46 of them controlled from the very start, the Fire Brigade said in a briefing earlier on Friday.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.