Last year, Governor Cuomo’s former mansion in the suburban waterfront enclave of Douglaston, Queens hit the market looking like something straight out of the Great Gatsby. Cuomo lived in the sprawling home with his ex wife Kerry Kennedy, but sold it in 1993, when he joined the Clinton administration.
It’s a six-bedroom, Mediterranean-style manor that was constructed in the 1920s and was asking $2.7 million. In January, the home sold for a cool $2.4 million. And the new buyers have listed it for rent, asking $6,000 a month. In Manhattan, $6,000 a month could definitely get you a nice apartment, but it couldn’t get you a mansion and outdoor space this impressive. It’s enough to lure a person way out to Douglaston.
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Earlier in the year, Governor Cuomo announced a plan to transform the subway with free WiFi, USB chargers, and mobile payment. Though the idea sounded great in theory, skeptics were quick to question where the funding would come from, a sentiment echoed now that the MTA has revealed renderings and details for the 2,042 new buses that will come on board over the next five years. They’ll include similar modernizations, including WiFi, between 35 and 55 USB charging ports, and two or three LCD information screens, according to Crain’s. The Governor touted the new bus design — “It has that European flair to it. It has almost a Ferrari-like look.” — but he still hasn’t spoken about how the state will fund the MTA’s five-year capital plan.
Just how much will the new bus fleet cost?
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When Governor Cuomo announced his $3 billion revamp of Penn Station earlier this month, skeptics were quick to point out that all the glassy new structures and reconfiguration of waiting rooms won’t do anything to help the fact that the Hudson River rail tunnels are crumbling. Clearly on the same page, Amtrak announced yesterday a detailed overview of the entire infrastructure project, and it comes in at a whopping $23.9 billion.
According to the Times, “the largest share of about $7.7 billion [will go towards] building the new Hudson tunnel and repairing the existing tunnel. The project includes a host of other elements, including expanding Pennsylvania Station in Manhattan at an estimated cost of $5.9 billion, and replacing rail bridges in New Jersey.”
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Commuting in and around NYC can at times be a daunting task, and with the all of the pending subway closures, things are about to get a bit more complicated. However, all hope is not lost, and a trouble-free ride to work right be in the near future. From a city-wide ferry system to cell-phone friendly subway cars, both Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio have several new initiatives in play to improve the city’s infrastructure. In addition to these ambitious government-backed measures, there are also a slew of motivated residents looking to make some changes, including a 32-Mile Greenway in Brooklyn and Queens and a High Line-esque bridge spanning the Hudson River, just to name a few. To keep your spirits high when subway lines are down, we’ve put together this list of top 10 transportation proposals for NYC.
See all 10 here
Is there anything in NYC that Governor Cuomo does like? He started his crusade to overhaul our infrastructure back in July when he revealed renderings for a $4 billion update to LaGuardia Airport. But this past week he pulled out all the stops, starting with a $3 billion redevelopment of Penn Station, a $1 billion expansion of the Javits Center, and now, a massive undertaking to “modernize and fundamentally transform” the MTA and the subway. Curbed reports that the Governor’s latest plan includes expediting the addition of more countdown clocks, adding contactless payment by 2018, equipping all stations with Wi-Fi by the end of this year and cell phone service by the end of 2017, and outfitting both subways and buses with USB chargers.
More details right this way
6sqft asked readers yesterday if Governor Cuomo would finally be able to get the Penn Station overhaul off the ground, after various news outlets reported that he would be announcing a plan to do just this. The majority of you said it wasn’t going to happen, but it looks like the long-envisioned project has just gotten one step closer to reality.
During a press conference yesterday at Madison Square Garden, the Governor revealed that he’ll be heading up a major revamp of Penn Station, which he called “un-New York,” according to Gothamist. The more than $3 billion redevelopment has been dubbed the Empire Station Complex, and a request for proposals will go out this week, due back in 90 days (not good news for the decade-old deal with developers Related Cos. and Vornado Realty). As expected, it includes the long-stalled Moynihan Station project that will convert the adjacent Farley Post Office into a large waiting area, similar in size to the main room at Grand Central. This will increase the size of the nation’s busiest transit hub by 50 percent and will connect to the current station by a network of underground tunnels. Though several options are on the table for a redesign, the renderings released by the Governor’s office show a glassy and light structure that’s quite unlike the current space that Cuomo described as “dark, constrained, ugly, a lost opportunity, a bleak warren of corridors… a miserable experience and a terrible first impression.”
More details and renderings ahead
It seems like Governor Cuomo’s had enough of ugly Manhattan buildings. Fresh off his announcement of a $3 billion overhaul of Penn Station comes another major redevelopment plan–a $1 billion expansion of the Jacob K. Javits Center, already the nation’s largest meeting place. First reported by Curbed, the project will increase the building by 1.2 million square feet, adding five times the current meeting space and bringing the total square footage to a massive 3.3 million. Renderings from FXFOWLE show a glassy structure that will house a 58,000-square-foot ballroom (Cuomo says it will be the largest in the northeast), 22,000 square feet of outdoor event space, and a four-level truck garage that will supposedly get 20,000 vehicles off the streets.
See all the renderings
After chatter last month that the state may reboot the plan to expand Penn Station into the adjacent Farley Post Office, the Wall Street Journal is now reporting that Governor Cuomo will announce this week a full overhaul for the nation’s busiest transit hub. It’s expected that his plan will indeed include the projected $900 million post office redevelopment known as Moynihan Station, which will relocate Amtrak’s waiting area, thereby freeing up room to improve current LIRR and NJ Transit concourses. Another component may be to relocate Madison Square Garden from atop the station so that more light and air can filter down to the subterranean space.
But questions still remain. Who will pay for such a massive undertaking? How will this affect the decade-old deal with developers Related Cos. and Vornado Realty? Let us know what you think!
Images: Farley Post Office (L); Current Penn Station entrance (R)
After months of squabbling over who’s responsible for funding repairs and expansions of NYC’s transit system, Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio reached an agreement on Saturday to keep the MTA’s $26.1 billion, five-year capital plan on track. The state will put in $8.3 billion and the city $2.5 billion (much more than de Blasio’s original $657 million planned contribution). However, Cuomo was clear that their commitment won’t come from increasing taxes and that he’s confident the money can be found in the existing state budget. The city, too, said it would not raise taxes, but rather take $1.9 billion from city funds and the rest from sources that could include development rights or rezoning. The agreement still leaves the MTA $700 million short of its total, but the agency hopes to close the gap by finding “further efficiencies.”
For those of you still flying high over yesterday’s news that LaGuardia Airport would soon be getting a major revamp, here comes some unfortunate news that might bring you back down to earth. As Crain’s reports, Governor Cuomo appears to have grossly underestimated his vision for the upgraded air hub. “According to several sources with direct knowledge of the project,” the paper says, “a new LaGuardia could take more than 10 years to build and cost close to $8 billion”—a price that’s double the Cuomo administration estimates of $4 billion, with at least another five years tacked on to the schedule.
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