The Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation (BOEDC), the primary economic development arm in the Bronx, released a “request for expressions of interest” (RFEI) seeking written proposals for the development of a new hotel and conference center in the vicinity of Yankee Stadium.
The BOEDC has been authorized to seek interest in the site by the Bronx Parking Development Company (BPDC), the entity which manages the various parking lots surrounding Yankee Stadium. The document identifies a specific parking garage, located at River Avenue and East 153rd Street with Heritage Field at its immediate northern border, as the site slated for development as a new hotel/conference center.
The RFEI requests that developers meet certain requirements in their proposals. Those include a LEED-certified hotel and conference center, at least one high-end penthouse level restaurant, a concierge or condo level for long-term stays and a retail component. The developer is also asked to consider the inclusion of a Latino Baseball Hall of Fame as part of the project. Responses to the RFEI are due for submission to BOEDC on November 15, 2011.
Borough President Diaz specifically mentioned the need for a major hotel near Yankee Stadium as a priority in his 2011 “State of the Borough” address.
“A major hotel and conference center has been a priority for the people of the Bronx for decades, and we are getting closer and closer to seeing that dream become a reality,” said Borough President Diaz. “For years, my office and the BOEDC have heard from both developers and hotel operators expressing their desire to develop a new hotel and conference center in the vicinity of Yankee Stadium. This RFEI will show the city just how much interest there is in this site, and is the first step towards the eventual development of this parking garage as a world-class hotel and conference center,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
“BOEDC is delighted to spear head this history effort the development of the Bronx’s first full service hotel conference center at the foot of Yankee Stadium will bring in over 125 jobs, enhance our tourism effort as well as maximize a valuable underutilized tract of land,” said Marlene Cintron, President of the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation.
“It is the hope of Bronx Parking Development Company LLC that this proposal may help to stabilize the financial situation we face so that we can ultimately meet our obligations to the bondholders and lower parking fees for those who park in the garages," said BPDC Vice President Chuck Lesnick. “The new hotel will be located at a midpoint in the recreation corridor between Times Square and the Empire City Racino at Yonkers Raceway and will attract tourists along with visiting ball clubs to this vital area.”
“We built the greatest stadium in the world, and because of this we have become the tourist attraction of the world. The borough of The Bronx has so many tourist attractions to offer. By building a hotel here, we will be the diamond of the five boroughs, creating jobs and boosting the economy. We support the building of the hotel by the stadium,” Lenny Caro, President & CEO of the Bronx Chamber of Commerce.
“Community Board #4 has long advocated the development of a major hotel and conference center and is pleased with the Borough President’s and BOEDC’s announcement. We have the opportunity of tying in economic development and tourism making this endeavor a catalyst for increased development and local entrepreneurship, resulting in job creation and business development opportunities and services to our community residents,” said Jose Rodriguez, District Manager of Community Board #4.
"A Yankee Hotel on River Avenue and 153rd Street would be a great anchor for the redevelopment of the entire area The BID welcomes the jobs, the vitality and the atmosphere that a premier hotel would contribute to the economy of the district,” said Cary Goodman, Executive Director of the 161st Street Business Improvement District.
“This hotel is a great project, one that would benefit not only the local community but the entire borough. This would benefit our major Bronx institutions, attract new tourists to our borough, create new jobs and help our economy, and I am proud to support it,” said Assembly Member Marcos Crespo.
"This is exciting news for the Bronx. I applaud the Borough President for having the vision necessary to continue the revitalization of the Bronx. The construction of a hotel near Yankee Stadium would be a strong vote of confidence in the Bronx and its leadership," said Assembly Member Jeffrey Dinowitz.
“For many years I have been a strong advocate for a first class hotel near Yankee Stadium. I look forward to working with the Borough President in developing a hotel that will attract visitors from all over the country and the world as well as providing a venue for conferences and events here in the Bronx,” said City Council Member G. Oliver Koppell.
A complete copy of the RFEI is available for download at www.boedchotelrfi.com