At what point does that need to be done?
When we think they’re in a position to agree to something like that. But we expect that they would have that understood by the end of next year. And that’ll probably be something that comes when we have a better sense of where that next contract is.
Is there still any thought of building a second station as part of the No. 7?
If the M.T.A. wants to share with us to build the core and shell, we’ll do that. We estimated it to be $500 million, of which we’ll pony up half of it. The M.T.A. doesn’t have the money—we can’t do it.
There is no plan—
No plan. It’s a nice idea, but we don’t believe—Senator Schumer, I respect your view—we don’t believe, from an economic development point of view, we need to put that station in place in order to get people to come to that part of the area. In fact, there’s a building going up right up on top of the site, so that kind of proves the point.
Would the city commit any money to help fund World Trade Center site overruns?
We certainly haven’t contemplated any of that. Part of the challenge of this exercise is that we don’t have any idea of what the cost overruns may be.
With Coney Island, where do talks stand with the largest landowner, Joe Sitt?
We have told Joe for well over a year that we would be interested in acquiring his land; that we believe that the long-term iconic nature of Coney Island can only be preserved—can best be preserved by a statute of parkland there that will provide longer-term certainty around use there; and that we would certainly be open to talking there. And we have discussions after discussions after discussions. Kind of one step forward, two steps back. He’s a very smart guy, clever; spent a lot of time crafting the acquisition plan he’s got there. He spent a lot of money doing it as well, so I think he vacillates a bit on whether or not he really wants to sell to the city.
What’s your plan at the end of the year if he doesn’t agree to sell? Do you still intend to move forward with the rezoning?
With his property, too?
Yep. We’re going to take that strip of land—the nine acres in the middle there—and reaffirm that C-7 [amusement] zoning.
Would you make it parkland?
To make it parkland, we’d have to own it, and we’re not there yet.
It seems like it would be a lot easier to finish some of these projects if you had another four years, doesn’t it?
No, I just think there would be a lot more things we could do. Look, if you don’t have deadlines, you’ll never get anything done. … The incentives which exist in the private sector don’t exist in the public sector. So creating real deadlines and holding to those deadlines is a way of forcing decisions and forcing process, so all four more years will do is give us the opportunity to script and come up with even more great ways to make the city greater.
What’s your relationship with former Deputy Mayor Dan Doctoroff? Do you interact with him?
I talk with him occasionally.
What’s his role in City Hall?
He hasn’t had any direct involvement on any projects in any material way since before Spitzer left office.