Friday, May 11, 2012 8:00am
McGraw-Hill Conference Center
Megaprojects and the New York City Street Grid: Lessons for the Future Canary Wharf, Hudson Yards, Times Square, World Trade Center
For more information, visit the conference website.
This one-day international conference will convene leading developers, architects, engineers and urban planners to explore megaprojects, both those constrained by the New York City street grid and those that were not. The Conference will address the issues faced and the lessons learned in developing and operating megaprojects in New York as well as in her sister city of London.
Acclaimed as “the single most important document in New York City’s development”, the New York City street grid celebrated its 200th anniversary in 2011. Since its adoption in 1811, the grid (originally known as the Commissioners’ Plan of 1811) has proved to be the single most powerful factor shaping the nature and shape of real estate development in the city.
But over the last 50 years, a number of large real estate developments (“megaprojects”) have challenged the adequacy and the effectiveness of the grid as a tool for modern city planning. The development of the World Trade Center required the closure of centuries-old streets to assemble its contiguous 16-acre plot. More recently, Hudson Yards on Manhattan’s west side has evolved as another mega-development to overlook the street grid that the Commissioners’ Plan envisioned for that site. It may soon be joined by yet another large development project proposed by Governor Cuomo – on the current site of the Javits Center.
Yet over this same half century, major urban redevelopments have successfully occurred without violating the spirit or the practicalities of the Manhattan street grid. The resurgence of places like Times Square, Union Square or Columbus Circle as major office, residential and tourist destinations speak to the ability to reimagine the city even within the grid’s rectilinear confines.
Join us at a full-day exploration of megaprojects and how they will impact the future growth and development of our cities.