On May 3, 2018, the City of New York and Amtrak announced the Sunnyside Yard master planning process will begin in summer 2018 with a newly formed steering committee that includes community leaders, regional thought leaders, and planning experts.
Practice for Architecture and Urbanism (PAU) has been selected to lead a multidisciplinary consultant team to conduct the technical analysis and develop the plan in coordination with the members of the Sunnyside Yard Steering Committee and the broader community.
What is Sunnyside Yard?
Sunnyside Yard is one of the busiest rail yards in the country and a key train storage yard and maintenance hub for Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor. It also serves New Jersey Transit and Long Island Rail Road, which is developing storage tracks and maintenance facilities there as part of its East Side Access Project.
Sunnyside Yard has been the focus of many conceptual overbuild proposals since it was first opened by Pennsylvania Railroad in 1910. With Amtrak and MTA currently undertaking critical capital investments in its rail infrastructure, this is a unique moment for the City to coordinate long-term planning for the future of the yard.
Over the next 20 years, New York City is expected to add more than half a million people—including over 80,000 in Queens alone.
That growth will put additional strain on schools, parks, mass transit, and housing that current residents rely upon. Sunnyside Yard presents an opportunity to address these challenges head-on in a way that integrates new development into the established fabric of surrounding communities.
Through the drafting of a Master Plan, the City and Amtrak will work with local and regional stakeholders to develop a vision and framework to guide investments and address the needs of the adjacent growing neighborhoods, borough, city, and region.
The Master Planning process will focus on developing a vision and planning framework that will guide the incremental steps of a potential long-term overbuild development. While it will build on the technical findings of the feasibility study released early last year, the master planning process is an opportunity for stakeholders to take a fresh look at opportunities.