Who Has the Power to Develop the West Side?
May 20th, 2008
Last week, the New York Observer unveiled its list of “the 100 most powerful people in New York real estate” – and gave the top spot to Jerry Speyer of the firm Tishman Speyer. Tishman Speyer owns the MetLife building, the Chrysler building, Rockefeller Center, and as the Observer wrote “nearly won the right to develop the West Side rail yards” until the deal with the MTA fell apart.
Today, there is news that the MTA has made an agreement with the Observer’s #3 man on the list Stephen Ross of Related Companies, which keeps the West Side rail yards project alive for now. (Number 2 on the list is Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is still hoping the West Side development can be part of his legacy.)
Despite an agreement with a new developer, critics say there are still many obstacles for the project†including environmental and land use reviews, competition with other big projects like the World Trade Center site, and†an uncertain economy which could take a toll on the amount of money private companies and the government†want to pour into the†project. State Assemblymember Richard Brodsky, who chairs the Committee on Corporations, Authorities, and Commissions and is #89 on the Observer’s list,†told the New York Times, “Until we get a handle on the level of subsidies involved, thereís no way to determine whether this is a good deal or a bad deal.”By Mark Berkey-Gerard on May 20, 2008, 3:42 pm
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