Despite a $500 million renovation, the Jacob Javits Convention Center could be nearing its end of days. In his State of the State address, Governor Cuomo proposed demolishing the massive center on the west side, which is currently undergoing a much needed upgrade, which would greatly improve the complex’s carbon footprint by installing energy saving green design features. Cuomo called to completely abandon the property, and instead build a new convention center in Queens that would be designed by Arquitectonica and include a casino.
Cuomo’s proposed plan would create a 3.8 million square foot facility in Queens, adjacent to the Aqueduct Racetrack and casino run by Genting’s Resorts World Casino. In fact, the new convention center is spurred by Malaysian-based Genting Group’s pledge to contribute $4 billion toward construction of the new center, in exchange for state supplied land. Cuomo says the new convention center would create an incredible amount of jobs and demand for hotel rooms and restaurants. The plan includes 3,000 hotel rooms and several restaurants and concessions.
Cuomo proposed turning the current Javits Center into a mixed use venue, hosting smaller events, but also integrating private offices and retail spaces open to the public. Repurposed the Javits space could return the area back to the neighborhood. The Hell’s Kitchen Neighborhood Association already loves Cuomo’s plan, which would give the neighborhood residents access to the Hudson River Park. Ideally, they’d like to tear the Javits down and reintegrate the area back into the city block grid.
The first phase of Cuomo’s plan, an incredible 2.6 million square feet of the proposed property, should be complete by November 2014. Should the project move forward, the city would need to seriously consider transportation to the new convention center in Queens.