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Press Release

City of New York and Hudson Square BID Break Ground on Streetscape Transformation Project To Bring New Pedestrian Space and Amenities to Hudson Street

Dec 04 2019
Press Release-Hudson Sq Streetscape-Image
Courtesy of Matthews Nielsen Landscape Architecture, P.C. with attribution to W Architecture and Landscape Architecture, LLC

Under the Design-Build Process, Redesign of Hudson Street between West Houston and Canal Streets Will Include New Green Space and a Protected Bike Lane

NEW YORK, NY—New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and New York City Department of Transportation (NYC DOT), in partnership with Hudson Square Business Improvement District (BID), today announced that construction has commenced on the first phase of work for a public-private, design-build project along Hudson Street between Canal Street and West Houston. The project will strengthen Hudson Square by enhancing pedestrian, bicycle, vehicular traffic safety and transforming the corridor into a grand boulevard that will increase connectivity throughout the neighborhood.

This key project will extend sidewalks along Hudson Street up to five feet and add new street amenities and along the seven-block corridor. The project scope includes:

  • A dedicated and parking-protected bike lane on Hudson Street from Houston to Canal Street, with sidewalk realignments and new pedestrian ramps
  • Over 8,000 square feet of planting areas filled with various trees, shrubs, and perennials
  • Application of the Hudson Square Standard for urban forestry, using continuous tree pits and permeable pavers to maximize storm water capture and support healthier trees
  • New benches providing the capacity for approximately 168 seats, bringing total seating count of 186 along corridor
  • 2,255 square feet of allowable space for future sidewalk cafes
  • New bicycle racks with capacity for 20 additional bicycles

The Hudson Street Streetscape initiative marks the first time the City of New York will use design-build to advance a public-private project in the five boroughs. Design-build streamlines the construction process by combining a project’s design and construction services into a comprehensive workplan and contracting both components to a single entity, rather than bidding them separately to different entities. The design-build system has been proven to significantly increase efficiency and help reduce costs on projects of all kinds. Additionally, the critical input of the construction team during design development can mitigate risks of issues during construction.

To ensure optimal coordination between the public work and utilities, this design-build project is structured as a joint bid that integrates the two scopes of work. NYCEDC and the utilities believe that it is in the best interests of the people of the City and the customers of the utilities to expedite construction, minimize disturbance to communities and reduce overall costs. Accordingly, the design-builder will be responsible for completing the construction of the pre-engineered utility work as part of this design-build project.

The construction plan was designed to minimize disruption by completing work in a phased approach. The project will be constructed in two phases. The Phase 1 work area extends along Hudson St. between W. Houston St and Spring Street, with work starting in November 2019 and target completion in fall 2020. Then, the team will proceed to the Phase 2 work area, which extends along Hudson St. between Spring St and Canal Street, with work anticipated to start in fall 2020 and target completion in summer 2021.

The Design-Build team is currently mobilizing for construction in the Phase 1 blocks, with activity for roadbed work including electrical and telecom utility work. In coming months, once underground utility work is complete, the road’s base will be replaced, along with new curbs and pedestrian islands. Finally, new sidewalks, hydrants, streetlights, signals, and other surface utilities will be completed, and then the site furnishings such as bike racks, benches, and planting will be installed.

“We are proud to continue the ongoing streetscape transformation of the Hudson Square neighborhood today, which will improve pedestrian and cyclist safety in the neighborhood, provide much-needed gathering space for the community, and beautify this important corridor,” said NYCEDC President and CEO James Patchett. “This first-of- its-kind design-build project is a testament to how we can implement high-quality public space by leveraging the expertise of the construction industry. I’d like to thank the Hudson Square BID and all of our partners for their support on this work.”

“The Hudson Street transformation into a grand boulevard will increase pedestrian walkability, add new green space, and significantly improve bicycle safety,” said Hudson Square BID President and CEO Ellen Baer. “We are excited to continue our work with EDC, DOT, and all of our partners to solidify Hudson Square as a thriving and community-friendly creative district.”

“The Hudson Square community is a bright creative district, and the plan to improve the quality of life for this neighborhood will do wonders for the safety and usability of this corridor,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “Congratulations to the Hudson Square BID, DOT and EDC for moving another step closer to the redesign of Hudson Square.”

“I’m thrilled that with this groundbreaking, we’re one step closer to making Hudson Square a place where locals and visitors alike will enjoy more pedestrian space, a protected bike lane, and a streetscape filled with beautiful new trees, plants and flowers” said City Council Speaker Corey Johnson. “I want to thank EDC, the Hudson Square BID and DOT for their dedication and hard work in revitalizing this street space and neighborhood.”

Prima Paving Corporation is leading the project’s design-build team and is responsible for overseeing related construction. Sam Schwartz Engineering, D.P.C is leading engineering, design, agency approvals, and public outreach. Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects is overseeing landscape architecture and urban design.

The Hudson Square BID’s comprehensive $27 million streetscape improvement plan, Hudson Square is Now, was conceived as a public-private partnership with the City of New York. Over the last five years, the plan has served a blueprint for substantial physical improvements on public land, designed to manage traffic, create pedestrian-friendly open spaces, promote environmental sustainability, and support retail.

The Hudson Street project is the final piece in the five-year, multi-phase master plan, including the planting and retrofitting of 250 trees using the award-winning Hudson Square Standard, and the revitalization of Spring Street Park, a state-of-the-art public space that serves as the gateway to Hudson Square.

New York City Economic Development Corporation is a mission-driven, non-profit organization that creates shared prosperity across New York City by strengthening neighborhoods and growing good jobs. NYCEDC works with and for communities to provide them with the resources they need to thrive, and invests in projects that increase sustainability, support job growth, develop talent, and spark innovation to strengthen the City’s competitive advantage. To learn more about our work and initiatives, please visit us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

DOT's mission is to provide for the safe, efficient, and environmentally responsible movement of people and goods in the City of New York and to maintain and enhance the transportation infrastructure crucial to the economic vitality and quality of life of City residents. More than 5,000 DOT employees oversee one of the most complex urban transportation networks in the world, with 6,000 miles of streets and highways, 12,000 miles of sidewalk, and 794 bridges and tunnels, including the iconic East River bridges. DOT also promotes the use of sustainable modes of transportation, designing bicycle facilities, bus lanes, and public plazas.

About the Hudson Square Business Improvement District
Hudson Square is home to more than 60,000 people working in advertising, design, media and other cutting-edge businesses, in the place where people are driving our future. The Hudson Square Business Improvement District (BID) provides improvements to the public realm where this future can thrive. The BID’s mission is to propel, support, and celebrate this great neighborhood with a focus on pedestrian safety, greening and programs that serve our community.