Last week, while The Observer was on holiday, the state made clear that its once grand plans for expanding the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center have been dramatically scaled back, with the dream of a major expansion all but dead.
The admission by the state’s development czar Patrick Foye, who was speaking at a hearing chaired by Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, came after almost a full year of review—one that found the expected costs of the project to exceed its $1.8 billon budget by more than $1 billion.
Mr. Foye created an expansion proposal with an estimated cost of about $3.3 billion, though its design and cost met resistance from users of the facility and the hotel industry, which has been paying a $1.50-a-night room tax to help pay for a bigger convention center.
Earlier this month, The Observer reported that the state could opt for just modest renovations. And last week, a day before Mr. Foye appeared at the hearing, Governor Spitzer told The Observer that the initiative has been “a difficult analytic process.
“The cost structure came in,” he added, “in a very different place than we anticipated, so that required some reexamination.”
We’ll have more from Governor Spitzer in The Observer’s Jan. 2 edition.