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NEW YORK CITY-It was only a relocation of a single block, but ownership of Madison Square Garden has reportedly determined not to make the walk and instead stay and renovate. That decision, if solid, throws a major hurdle in the path of the massive planned renovation of Penn Station and the neighboring James A. Farley Post office.

“After exploring several alternatives, it has become clear that the only viable option is a renovation,” MSG spokesman Barry Watkins is quoted as saying in published reports.

But those left with damage control are presenting a brave face. Vishaan Chakrabarti, president of Moynihan Station Venture, a joint venture of the Related Cos. and Vornado Realty Trust, says in a statement that, “Our joint venture remains committed to this tremendous opportunity to rebuild Pennsylvania Station. While we understand the frustrations of Madison Square Garden after three lengthy years of pursuing this grand but complex plan, we have every faith that our city, state and federal leadership will enable this project to become a reality for all New Yorkers.”

This is just the latest glitch in a highly visible and often hotly challenged redevelopment project. A month ago, then-governor Eliot Spitzer was charged with “shoring up support and financing for the venture,” the costs for which were steadily rising.

The project is seen as a key catalyst for West Side’s renewal and would create a new central hub for the Long Island Railroad and New Jersey Transit in order to alleviate congestion from Penn Station.

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