It had been a while since a spent some time in New York City. And many of my trips over the past ten years gave me little time to explore the city.
So I was quite blown away on a recent trip to see Hudson Yards project. The project is simply massive. The Eastern Yard portion of the project was completed in 2019 after seven years of construction. It’s located between 10th and 11th Avenues and 30th and 33rd Streets, consisting of six skyscrapers, a shopping mall, and a cultural center. Work on the Western Yard portion of the project will continue until mid-decade.
The buildings are modern and beautiful. You feel like you’re in a completely new city. But while it’s better in many ways than what it replaced in that part of Manhattan, you can also understand why many were opposed to this project. Too much of this type of development can destroy the character of a city like New York.
Still, New York is big enough to accommodate this historic project.
We walked around and took it all in, checking out the indoor mall and eating at some of the restaurants. It’s impressive. Any city welcoming a new skyscraper and related development would be thrilled with the design and craftsmanship reflected in these structures. If you’re visiting Manhattan, this shouldn’t be at the top of your list, but it’s definitely worth seeing.
30 Hudson Yards is the home of KKR, who recently expanded its footprint by taking all the office space that Meta declined to renew. And that brings us to one difficult subject – commercial real estate is struggling post pandemic as business grapple with remote work and hybrid work. They just don’t need as much office space, which calls into question whether Hudson Yards has become a relic even before it’s been completed.
In the end, I suspect Hudson Yards will be a net positive for the city, presuming that we see a long pause in office tower development after this project is completed.