December 2017
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A Better Plan for a Bigger Javits Center

javits center front small

The MAS has proposed an alternative to the current plan to expand the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center northward. Our plan would expand the center west by decking over West Street. The design offers 83,000 more square feet of total space than the state and city’s proposal and keeps corridors to the waterfront open.

The Javits Center stands between Eleventh Avenue and the Hudson River from 34th to 39th Streets. The state and city’s plan, to cost $1.4 billion, seeks to create an additional 1.4 million square feet of convention space by extending the building two blocks north to 41st Street. This threatens to cut off the city’s visual and physical connections with the waterfront for two additional blocks.

javits center barbed wire

The MAS plan includes 62,000 square feet more meeting space than the state and city plan, and 30,000 square feet more ballroom space. These types of facilities are increasingly important for large conventions and are sorely lacking in the current Javits building.

The MAS plan also creates better convention space. It provides river views and direct Hudson River Park access for convention attendees.

Just as important, the MAS plan ensures greater riverfront access for the surrounding communities by maintaining the 39th, 40th and 41st Street corridors leading to Hudson River Park and the 39th Street Ferry Terminal.

The MAS plan represents an opportunity to revisit the original intent of making the Javits Center an engaging part of the waterfront. When the center was built in 1986, the city included public amenities in the Javits’ design. There were plans for an arboretum, a footbridge over the highway, and a waterfront hotel on Pier 76 to revitalize the run-down area.