Mayor Bloomberg, City Council Speaker Quinn, Borough President Carrion and the Related Companies Break Ground on Gateway Center at Bronx Terminal Market
One-Million-Square-Foot Retail Center Will Bring 5,000 Jobs, $500 Million in Private Investment and New Public Waterfront Access at the South Bronx.
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrión and The Related Companies Chairman & CEO Stephen M. Ross today hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the Gateway Center at the Bronx Terminal Market, a nearly one-million-square-foot retail center in the South Bronx. The $500 million project – one of the largest private investments ever in the Bronx – will create about 2,900 construction jobs and 2,100 permanent retail jobs, and will provide new public access to the Harlem River waterfront. Assembly Members Jose Rivera and Aurelia Greene, Council Member Maria del Carmen Arroyo, Related’s President Jeff Blau, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development & Rebuilding Daniel L. Doctoroff, and Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) Interim President Joshua J. Sirefman attended the ceremony in the South Bronx.
“Our economic development strategy is designed to encourage private investment and create jobs throughout all five boroughs, and there may be no area of the City that serves as a better example of that today than the South Bronx,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “When you combine major job-creating development projects like the new Gateway Center at the Bronx Terminal Market, the Hub Retail and Office Center, and a new Yankee Stadium with important local initiatives like the Bronx Workforce Career Centers, the Bronx Business Solution Center and the HUB/3rd Avenue Business Improvement District, you have what the South Bronx has long needed - a plan to put people to work.”
“Today’s groundbreaking begins a much-needed economic revitalization for the South Bronx,” said Speaker Quinn. “The Gateway Center at the Bronx Terminal Market will turn underutilized space into a thriving commercial area and bring thousands of quality permanent jobs to local residents. The community, City and developers can be proud of their collaborative effort to improve this community.”
When it opens to the public in fall 2009, the new Gateway Center will house a mix of national and local retailers and restaurants, creating a destination for Bronx residents who currently travel outside the borough to shop. The complex will be designed by nationally recognized architecture and engineering firms GreenbergFarrow and Brennan Beer Gorman Architects. The center’s tenants will include Target, Home Depot, Best Buy, and Bed, Bath & Beyond as well as community retailers. The project includes improved traffic lanes and signage and enhanced streetscape design that will beautify the area to help make streets and sidewalks safer and more attractive. As part of the project, Related will restore the Prow Building, at the corner of East 149th Street and River Avenue, in an effort to preserve the history of the old Terminal Market.
The project, which is expected to generate about $21 million in annual tax revenue for New York City, will benefit from programs sponsored by the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation, such as “Buy Bronx First” and “Bronx at Work.” In addition, a percentage of the contracts for the Gateway Center’s construction will be given to minority- and women- owned businesses who are certified as Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (M/WBEs) with the Department of Small Business Services. The Gateway Center will also provide $3 million toward job training and referral assistance for local residents.
“Good economic development can only happen when the community is an involved stakeholder in the process and that is exactly what we are doing with the Bronx Terminal Market redevelopment project,” said Borough President Carrión. “This is not just about investing in property and business; it is about investing in people, and because of our efforts, the Bronx will have new jobs and retail choices that have been lacking in this neighborhood. I look forward to continuing to work with the Mayor and my fellow elected officials as we continue to build a stronger Bronx and a stronger city.”
“The Gateway Center is a quintessential demonstration of how the community can benefit when public and private entities work together toward a common goal,” said Related Chairman and CEO Ross. “Related has developed a keen understanding of what residents desire in an urban retail center, enabling us to develop facilities that reflect the face of the community and the people who will shop here. We are confident that this new chapter of the Bronx Terminal Market will be an exciting one, with 5,000 new jobs, new shopping options, and clean and safe streets.”
The City Council approved the project in January 2006 under the City’s Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP). To help the 22 former tenants of the Bronx Terminal Market relocate successfully, the City, the Bronx Empowerment Zone and Related, with the support of Borough President Carrión, City Council Speaker Quinn and the Bronx delegation of Council members, and Assemblywoman Aurelia Greene, established an $8 million assistance package and tapped the Cornerstone Group to provide relocation services. All 22 merchants accepted the relocation package and are staying in New York City, with 18 of them remaining in the Bronx.
“Just as the deteriorating Bronx Terminal Market served as a constant reminder of the long-standing neglect of the South Bronx, the new, vibrant Gateway Center will symbolize the area’s resurgence,” said Deputy Mayor Doctoroff. “I want to thank all of the elected officials who not only helped us to create these new jobs and make this retail center a reality, but who were also integral in our efforts to ensure the former tenants of the Bronx Terminal Market relocated successfully and, for the most part, in the Bronx.”
“The residents of the South Bronx will soon be able to enjoy the same shopping opportunities that many residents in the rest of the City take for granted,” said Related President Jeff Blau. “They will no longer have to travel outside the borough or state to access national retailers and great restaurants.”
The Gateway Center at the Bronx Terminal Market will be situated in the heart of an area the Bloomberg Administration is committed to revitalizing with new jobs and new amenities. To the east of the project, Related is building The Hub Retail and Office Center, a $56.7 million mixed-use complex that will create about 230 construction jobs and 224 new permanent jobs. To the north, a new Yankee Stadium will bring with it nearly 1,000 construction jobs, a new waterfront park and esplanade along the Harlem River, and significant streetscape, traffic and infrastructure improvements. Also in Hunts Point, the Bloomberg Administration has worked closely with community leaders to create the Hunts Point Vision Plan, a comprehensive initiative designed to promote a sustainable and working community. In addition to committing more than $27 million in capital funds to carry out the Vision Plan’s initial goals, the City has already invested a total of $110 million at the new Fulton Fish Market at Hunts Point and the Hunts Point Produce Market.