A day after the M.T.A.’s West Side rail yards deal with Tishman Speyer Properties was officially declared dead, Mayor Bloomberg today pointed to the gubernatorial roller coaster in Albany to explain the troubles for his economic development agenda.
“The chaos in Albany was not good for us,” he told reporters. “I’m not disparaging what they were trying to do, it’s just that when you change administrations, it does slow things down, and nobody expected when the administration changed a year and a third ago, that a year and a third later, they would go through the same process.”
This is a tune the mayor has been singing for a few days now—in London, he was more explicit, saying, “When Eliot Spitzer came in, he basically stopped every project that the Pataki administration negotiated, saying he wanted to look at it.”
The mayor certainly has a point that the bulk of the major developments going on in the city—Moynihan Station, the West Side rail yards, the World Trade Center, the Javits Center, Brooklyn Bridge Park, etc.—fall under the control of state government, and Mr. Spitzer did slow down many of them when he came in, and Governor Paterson is indeed taking another look now at some.
However, with respect to the rail yards, it is unclear exactly how the turmoil in Albany would be all that relevant to the deal collapse. The M.T.A. moved to announce the Tishman Speyer deal without any delay despite the shift in governors, with Mr. Paterson appearing at the press conference just a week and a half after his inauguration.
[Thanks go to The Observer‘s Azi Paybarah for the video]