| NEW YORK, April 27
NEW YORK, April 27 The Port Authority of New
York and New Jersey on Thursday laid out a new timeline for its
revamped efforts to replace or renovate New York City's aging
main bus terminal in midtown Manhattan.
Selection of a consultant to help run an environmental
review is expected by the third quarter of this year, Steven
Plate, the authority's chief of major capital projects, told its
board of commissioners.
Construction cannot begin until completion of the review,
which would take two years. No use of eminent domain to take
private property is expected, he said.
The terminal in the United States' largest city serves
230,000 passengers, many of them commuters, every weekday,
according to the Port Authority's website. That number is
projected to climb to 337,000 by 2040.
The project has been dogged by delay, partly because of
political and territorial disputes within the bi-state agency,
as well as controversy over where to locate new facilities and
how to replace the hulking, dilapidated structure.
"We are pushing a reset button," Andrew Lynn, the
authority's director of planning and regional development, said
at a regional planning conference last week.
"We're entering into this without any preferred option. We
don't have a site, we don't have a design, we don't know for
sure how big this thing will be," he said. "We don't have a
schedule, we don't have a budget yet. We're really starting
Initial ideas to replace the terminal while keeping it
running were expensive and unpopular, despite extensive studies,
As a result, a design competition led to five new ideas
about where in the crowded Manhattan landscape the terminal
could be placed, but "they did not get a warm reception,
certainly on the New York side of the river," Lynn said.
Options to be considered include one that calls for adding
more floors on top of the existing building, which would then be
New Jersey state Senator Robert Gordon, a Democrat, has
advocated that option. On Thursday, he told the board that
"building up" on the current site, near Times Square, would
preserve access to six subway lines and minimize neighborhood
The Port Authority included $3.5 billion in its latest
capital plan to help fund the project, the total cost of which
is expected to be much higher but will not be more certain until
the review is complete.
(Reporting by Hilary Russ; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)