New York City’s first discount outlet center,the world’s tallest observation wheel, the first new shopping mall built in New York City in the past 40 years, and a 750,000 square-foot building that will house nine ice skating rinks, are just a few of the commercial developments taking place in the boroughs of Staten Island and the Bronx.
The city of New York is comprised of five boroughs, yet little is often mentioned about Staten Island and the Bronx regarding residential and commercial development. Staten Island is separated from Manhattan, Brooklyn and New Jersey, is the least populated of the boroughs but is the third largest in area size. The other borough, which has a long history being the home of the New York Yankees, is the Bronx, located north of Manhattan and Queens and south of Westchester County. The borough’s inland area is the fourth largest inland area of the five boroughs and the fourth most populated.
One of the leading attractions scheduled to be built in Staten Island is the New York Wheel, which promises to become one of the City’s great landmark attractions. Located in the Northeastern side of Staten Island in the St. George region, the 630-foot tall attraction will be the tallest observation wheel in the world and the only one in New York City.
When completed, the Wheel will accommodate up to 1,440 people per ride, welcoming as many as 30,000 visits per day and anticipates over 4 million visits per year. The Wheel is being built on the opposite side of Richmond County Savings Bank Ballpark, the home field of the Staten Island Yankees, and is scheduled to open in 2016.
Adjacent to New York Wheel is Empire Outlets, which will include 300,000 square feet of retail outlet space, 30,000 square feet of restaurant space, 20,000 square feet of banquet space and a 200 room hotel. The project is expected to be completed in the summer of 2016. This summer, Nordstrom Rack announced that they signed a lease as the first tenant for a two level store that will anchor the estimated 100 retail outlet stores.
The combined cost of the Empire Outlets and the New York Wheel at $580 million is the largest private investment in the North Shore’s of the boroughs history and biggest investment in the borough since the construction of the Verrranzo-Narrows Bridge in the 1960s.
To meet the demands of visitors to this section of Staten Island, more than $51 million in city investments will take place on Staten Island. About $35 million will be allocated by the Department of Transportation for the Staten Island Ferry Terminal Design.
Also in the North Shore of Staten Island is a development just south of the Staten Island Ferry Terminal. Construction is scheduled to commence for Lighthouse Point, a mixed-use development which will include 75,000 square feet of retail shops and restaurant space, a 164 room hotel and approximately 96 residential units along a waterfront esplanade.
Perhaps the largest residential development taking place in Staten Island is the Ironstate Development URL Staten Island, a $150 million mixed-use development being built on the former Navy homeport in Stapleton. Itwill eventually contain 900 apartments,30,000 square feet of ground floor retail space,600 parking spaces and a public plaza. The first phase, which will include 571 units, and 25,000 square feet of retail space — primarily familiar food and drink options — is set to be completed in 2015.
One of the largest mixed use developments in Staten Island will be built in the 88 acre Charleston Mixed Use Development site. When completed, the plot is expected to have 11 acre retail sites, a K-8 public school, a 15,000 square foot library as well as a 23 acre Fairview Park.
A significant amount of residential and commercial development is under various levels of development in the Borough of the Bronx. This summer, the Bronx welcome the Mall at Bay Plaza, the first indoor, suburban style mall built in New York City in 40 years. The $300 million, three story, 780,000 square foot mall has tenants including Macy’s, H & M, Ulta, Forever 21 and Michael Kors, as well as an 800 seat food court and four restaurants.
In the Fall, the Bronx will welcome its first Marriot Hotel, the first luxury hotel for the borough. The 125-room Marriott Residence Inn will be located at 1776 Eastchester Road in the East Bronx. The seven-story, extended stay hotel is part of the Hutchinson Metro Center, a mixed-use campus off the Hutchinson River Parkway. The hotel is located on the 370,000 square foot, 42 acre multi building Hutchinson Metro Center Campus. Tenants in the complex include LA Fitness Health Club (first in New York City), as a 280,000 square foot building. The building will house an ambulatory surgery center with 12 operating rooms and four procedure rooms, and imaging center, onsite laboratory services, a pharmacy, and primary and specialty care practices.
The developer of the complex is Simone Development who is also building for Montefiore Medical Center an 11-story, 93,000 square foot medical building in the Riverdale section of the Bronx.
Construction is also planned to begin for the Outlets New York City, a 375,000 square foot, two level retail site located at 2505 Bruckner Boulevard in the Bronx. The planned mall is scheduled to be built on the former site of the Whitestone Multiplex Cinemas and a parking lot.
Grid Properties, the co-developers of Harlem USA are planning to construct a 350,000 square feet retail complex called Gun Hill Square, approximately 12 acres at the intersection of the New England Thruway, the Hutchinson River Parkway and East Gun Hill Road.
This summer, Simone Development opened the 285,000 square foot of retail space on two levels in the new mall at Lafayette Avenue and the Hutchinson River Parkway. The center is anchor by Target and other stores include TJ Maxx, Petco, Famous Footwear, Applebee’s, Subway, Five Guys Burgers and a host of other retailers.
The Bronx may also be the future home of the New York City Football Club, a soccer team, a consortium backed by the New York Yankees and Manchester City owner Sheik bin Zayed al-Nahayn, an arena just south of Heritage Field, the site of the old Yankee Stadium. The facility would be located on the 10 are site which encompass three Yankee Stadium parking lots.
The business of sports and athletics will be growing in the Bronx with the signing of a lease of Kingsbridge Armory on a 99 year lease, by Kingsbridge National Ice Center to begin the process of building out the 750,000 square foot building a facility that will house nine ice skating rinks and arena-style style seating. As noted in a press release by Kyle Kimball, President of New York City’s Economic Development Corp, who signed the lease with the developers said "This project will not just build the world’s largest indoor ice center, but create a new economic engine for the borough".