By now you’ve no doubt  heard of the new midtown expansion, Hudson Yards. With an estimated price tag of $25 billion, the project is being billed as a the most expensive real estate development project in U.S. history. Today, Ignitia Office takes a closer look at this mammoth project, how it came to be, and what to expect when it opens.

Large Scale Planning

Having broken ground in 2012, the 28-acre mega-project will actually be a series of 33 smaller projects that when complete, will offer up an entirely new neighborhood on the city’s far west side. Spearheaded by real estate powerhouses Related Companies and Oxford Properties, the project was planned and funded under a set of agreements in conjunction with the city, state, and MTA. In commenting on how the project was financed, Related CEO Jeff Blau remarked, “In total it’ll be about $25 billion of investment into New York City. We’re a private company, so we bring in capital partners from around the world, U.S. pension funds, foreign sovereign wealth funds and traditional construction lenders.” When complete, the project will boast 16 new skyscrapers designed by multiple architects and will boast nearly 20 million square feet of new floor space.

An Innovative Design

Located at the west side rail yard between 30th and 41st streets to the north, and 10th and 11th avenues in midtown Manhattan to the west. The location already has its own subway station on the 7 train, Hudson Yards. But building at the yard was no small task. For over sixty years, the air rights over the rail yard have been very sought after property. How though, could anyone possibly develop the area above the yard without displacing the rail yard itself? The solution was found by way of a $400 million joint venture between Related Companies and Oxford Properties in which the two companies found a way to build a platform above the yard on which the buildings would stand, while still allowing trains to be housed beneath. The plan was approved, and on December 4, 2012 the project broke ground.

Luxury Living and Retail

According to Related senior vice president Thad Sheely, the aim of the complex is to combine offices, residential, and high end retail space all in one place. Add to this the plans for a 14-acre open-air Public Square similar to the city’s High Line, and you have the makings of New York’s newest high-end district.

From penthouses to retail, one thing that’s certain is that the entire project will be top notch. With retailers like Neiman Marcus, Cartier, Rolex, and Piaget already calling the complex home, the crowd the neighborhood will attract will certainly be big spenders. And all this is by design. According to Related Chairman Stephen Ross, “If you look at where all the young people are today, where they want to be, where all the money is going, it’s the West Side of Manhattan. The yards will be the epicenter of all that.”

With an estimated completion date of 2024, hopes could not be higher for the ultra-swank new neighborhood. We can’t wait to see it!