According to a recent study by the city’s Independent Budget Office, the City of New York will have to pony up nearly $80 million more than originally expected to replace the 22 acres of parkland lost to the new Yankee Stadium. This project will now cost around $195 million. Who would have guessed?
Crain’s Daniel Massey has more:
Design revisions, project additions, unanticipated cleanup of hazardous materials and construction inflation have driven costs up by $78.6 million, the report said. While the Yankees are financing the stadium — with the help of city and state subsidies — the parks are being paid for by the city.
“The city pledged to provide new recreational facilities of equal or greater fair market value to those displaced,” the report said. “Since the plans were announced, the costs of these projects have risen significantly.”
According to the original 2005 estimate, the cost of the replacement parks was projected to be $116.1 million. But design revisions and the addition of new projects have added $30 million to the cost. Unanticipated hazardous waste cleanup and environmental remediation cost an extra $7.6 million, and additional site work and safety increased costs by $10.9 million. A greater-than-expected rise in construction costs accounted for $7.6 million of the increase, while construction delays added $6.2 million.
The factors driving the remaining $16.3 million cost increase are not yet clear because portions of the project are still out for bid, the report said.
Furthermore, the replacement parks project won’t be complete until 2011 at the earliest, nearly a year behind schedule. Joyce Hogi of the Bronx’s CB4 isn’t happy. “The kids that played in these parks will be adults and parents by the time we get the replacements,” she said to Crain’s.
In the end, this is of course no different from countless other city projects. Along Second Ave., the long-awaited Second Ave. Subway has run into countless delays and budget problems, the Atlantic Yards and Hudson Yards projects are a mess, and even the Fulton St. Hub, part of the Lower Manhattan post-9/11 redevelopment plan is stuck in neutral.
This one is, of course, on the city and not the Yankees. But it is a prime example of bad planning. The area needs these parks, and it’s a shame they won’t be ready on time.