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SOUTH BRONX, NY-BTM Development Partners, an affiliate of the Related Cos., has unveiled design plans for its one-million-sf Gateway Center at Bronx Terminal here. The effort is estimated to cost approximately $394 million to realize.

Situated on a 16.8-acre site east of the Major Deegan Expressway, just south of Yankee Stadium, the center will include a community retail center, a hotel and banquet facility and a waterfront park and esplanade. The project is being jointly designed by GreenbergFarrow and Brennan Beer Gorman Architects. There will be two three-story structures separated by a six-story parking facility accommodating 2,340 cars. Each level of retail will have its own dedicated parking field. The retail buildings and parking facility are connected by pedestrian bridges which span internal driveways. This open-air environment enables customers to see the various retail levels.

Community-oriented retail will line River Avenue and Exterior Street, which will be pedestrian friendly and will include restaurants or cafes that may have outdoor seating. Design elements such as canopies, new street furniture, trees and other plantings and raised walkways will be included.

A 250-room hotel also will be built on the north end of the site, and will include a 30,000-sf banquet hall for weddings and other receptions. The redevelopment will generate 5,210 permanent and construction jobs and create new economic opportunities for a long underserved community. It will produce approximately $21 million in annual tax revenue for the city.

New York City Economic Development Corp. president Andrew M. Alper says the project helps fulfill a “mission by transforming a market which suffered from years of neglect and non-investment into an outstanding retail development. It will create jobs for area residents, generate revenue for the city, and allow New York City consumers to shop in the five boroughs.”

The Bronx Terminal Market, which was built in the 1920s, served as one of the largest Hispanic food wholesale operations in the country. Today, the area consists of nine buildings, seven of which are partially occupied, with less than 30 fruit and vegetable wholesalers. The plan dovetails with a city initiative to revitalize this borough. Construction will take approximately two years with the entire retail center opening in 2008. Upon approval of the development plan the city has agreed to grant Related a 49-year lease for the property, with options to extend to 99 years.

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