The Hudson Yards neighborhood officially opened to the public, marking a historic moment in the City of New York. Beginning at noon, New Yorkers and visitors are able to visit for the first time the Public Square and Gardens, a new five-acre public space; its centerpiece, an interactive landmark temporarily known as Vessel; and The Shops & Restaurants, a one-million-square-foot retail center featuring a collection of more than 100 diverse shops and culinary experiences. Tenants have begun moving into 55 Hudson Yards and 30 Hudson Yards, two large-scale commercial towers, and residential occupancy is underway at 15 Hudson Yards. 10 Hudson Yards opened in May of 2016. The opening of Hudson Yards, built atop the MTA’s John D. Caemmerer West Side Storage Yard, brings together for the first time the West Side and the neighboring districts of Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen.
Hudson Yards developers Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group were joined by U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, Congressman Adriano Espaillat, Congressman Jerrold Nadler, Council Speaker Corey Johnson, First Deputy Mayor Dean Fuleihan and numerous elected officials; Gary LaBarbera, President of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York; and collaborators including architects, designers, contractors, engineers, restaurateurs and chefs, retail and corporate CEOs; and notable New Yorkers to celebrate the opening of New York’s newest neighborhood. Native New Yorker and CNN anchor Anderson Cooper served as master of ceremonies. Live performances by singer and songwriter Andra Day, Dancers of The Ailey School and the National Chorale, The Professional Performing Arts High School Choir, marked the extraordinary occasion. One hundred notable New Yorkers, from civic leaders to Broadway stars, sports icons to fashion designers, media personalities to artists, cultural principals to chefs, corporate heads and crowd favorite Big Bird, gathered in the Public Square and Gardens to walk Vessel’s 2,500 steps for the first time. Attendees participated in inaugural walks up Vessel, the neighborhood’s centerpiece designed by Thomas Heatherwick and Heatherwick Studio. A ribbon-cutting and photo-op at The Shops & Restaurants followed with development executives and retail and restaurant partners.
“There are three main reasons why I have long supported developing the vast underused space on Manhattan’s far West Side — and connecting it to all else via the extension of the 7 train: jobs, jobs, jobs. Jobs for New Yorkers in every borough, and at every rung of the economic ladder. New York is a bold, future-focused city. And the work done here by Steve Ross, Related, the City, the building trades unions, the MTA and others will contribute to the economic energy, optimism and vitality that will keep New York growing and creating — and at the forefront of global cities — for a long time to come,” said U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer.
Governor Cuomo said, “The development of Hudson Yards has transformed the West Side of Manhattan, creating jobs and economic opportunity for New Yorkers. With the building of a new Pennsylvania Station-Moynihan Farley complex, we are going to connect this emerging neighborhood to a world-class 21st century transportation hub. Today marks our continued commitment toward building an even more sustainable City and region, and we are proud to be creating a stronger future for our state.”
Congressman Jerrold Nadler said, “Today is truly a historic day in New York City, it is not every day that you get to open a brand new neighborhood in Manhattan. The one word that best describes Hudson Yards is ‘transformative.’ This project is not a stand-alone development – it is the creation of a new, mixed use neighborhood, including public parks, cultural institutions, affordable housing, and thousands of jobs. As this project has created much-needed links between Chelsea, Clinton and Hell’s Kitchen, it has, thankfully, become easy to forget how disruptive the West Side Yards were to our urban fabric. I congratulate the many partners that have made this revitalization of the West Side possible.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio said, “In New York City, we make the impossible reality – including building new neighborhoods over old railyards. Hudson Yards is bringing thousands of jobs, new green space, and expanded transportation to the West Side. The project is an example of the ingenuity that helps make New York the greatest city in the world.”