The Real Deal New York

Dan Doctoroff wants to move the Javits Center to Queens

About $8B needed to relocate convention hall, former deputy mayor notes in opinion piece

December 01, 2014 09:40AM

From left: Dan Doctoroff, the Jacob Javits Convention Center and Sunnyside Yards, Queens

From left: Dan Doctoroff, the Jacob Javits Convention Center and Sunnyside Yards, Queens

Moving the Jacob Javits Convention Center to Queens is key to attracting more conferences and conventions, according to former deputy mayor Dan Doctoroff.

In a New York Times op-ed, Doctoroff argued that Sunnyside Yards, a 160-acre rail yard on the border of Long Island City, would be an ideal spot for the Javits Center, which is located on Eleventh Avenue between 34th and 40th streets in Manhattan.

Hotel rooms in Sunnyside Yarks, Doctoroff wrote, are much cheaper than the ones near the Javits Center. That, he noted, would help “the affordability problem” that is holding the Javits Center back. Earlier this year, Doctoroff proposed to bring the 2024 Olympic Games to the Sunnyside location, to no avail.

He further argued that redeveloping Sunnyside Yards “seems obvious.” A platform — which would cost about $8 billion — over the train tracks would be needed to make sure the trains can still run while the convention center is being built.

“The cost has always made the idea a nonstarter, but times — and real estate values — have changed,” Doctoroff wrote in the article. “Stronger market conditions bring us closer to feasibility, but the numbers for building the platform still don’t add up unless we get creative. That’s why we should relocate the Javits Center to Sunnyside, sell the extremely valuable property the Javits Center owns, and use the proceeds to pay for it.

The land under the Javits Center could be rezoned for residential use, Doctoroff argued. That could bring more than 11,000 units — with a 20 percent affordable component — to the area. [NYT] — Claire Moses

  • Perryr

    City better served with Convention Center where it is now located. IDC Center in Queens proved a failure.

  • Chick Davis

    That’s a terrible idea. Why would all of those out-of-towners coming to NYC want to go to Queens. If they are doing it to draw people to the outer boroughs, they should do it in the South Bronx, where the transportation can handle it, but then you have to deal with the criminal element.

    • Brian Hughes

      LIC is the hottest hotel sub-market in NYC with new developments going up as we speak

      • patmgee

        people who come to manhattan for a convention dont want to be in a submarket. they want to be in the city! dont put lipstick on a pig and sell it as beef.

  • Ryan

    This guy has to give this up. First he tried to move the Jets to Manhattan along with his failed bid for the Olympics. Now he says to move Javits to Queens??? Seems to me like another failed bid

    • Brian Hughes

      he probably has a group of builders ready to build a mega complex on the site should it become available.

  • S. Lecht

    This fellow is no Robert Moses!!
    To the rest of the world Manhattan is NYC and NYC is Manhattan. Move it to Queens?
    This man obviously understands nothing about the dynamics that govern the city!

  • TONY KNIGHT

    all this development has destroyed LIC

  • Javits Center is a home of trade shows and special events. Each year it attract more retailers, investors and others associated with the industry. Visitors can find an incredible parking near Javits Center which makes hassle-free visiting to a New York City for a special event. http://parkright.com/javits-center.shtml

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