When the Fulton Transit Center opened last November, glowing reviews celebrated its 53-foot-wide oculus while lamenting its $1.4 billion price tag, which had doubled since the project’s inception several years before. Now, spokespeople from Westfield and the MTA tell YIMBY that retail will begin opening in the fall and continue through 2016. There will be about 20 stores ranging from retail and service providers to eateries and full service restaurants.
Governor Cuomo and Vice President Biden announced plans calling for the complete reconstruction of LaGuardia Airport, in East Elmhurst, Crain’s reports. The $4 billion project will have four connected terminals and will wrap around the Grand Central Parkway. There will also be 24-hour ferry service and an AirTrain linking the airport to the 7 train’s Willets Point stop. Approval from the Port Authority is required, and the terminal portion is expected to break ground in 2016 for a 2018 completion. The AirTrain link will take roughly five years to build.
Last October, construction was making quick progress at the World Trade Center Transit Hub, dubbed the Oculus, and the structure is now receiving its finishing touches. Platform B of the PATH’s WTC station has now opened to the public, and Platform C is currently being reconstructed. According to Curbed, glass installation for the structure’s skylight is also underway.
While the proposed park off the Meatpacking District, dubbed Pier55, waits for the Army Corps of Engineers and State Department’s approval, the project’s landscape architecture firm Mathews Nielsen has made small tweaks to the design. The park’s highest elevation has been lowered to 62 feet, according to Curbed, and vegetation will be very diverse. An amphitheater will be located near the back, and federal funds have been allotted for the park’s 13th Street pedestrian bridge. Construction is expected to begin in 2016.
New York City’s infrastructure crisis stems from many issues, but one of the biggest problems in maintaining and expanding the city’s arteries are construction costs, which have ballooned into a stratosphere of unknown numbers and complete non-transparency on the part of city agencies. But now YIMBY has obtained data showing that salaries are up to 177% higher for unionized employees of contractors performing public works projects and building service work for government agencies than the prevailing wages of their respective private industry counterparts.