Friday, June 27, 2008

Costco In Harlem?

We like the idea. You can buy everything at Costco. Well not everything but many things. And at very reasonable prices. The joing fee is not bad either.

It appears that Harlem might get a Costco because HomeDepot is having technical difficulties and is looking for another big box store to replace them. The store would be located at the East River Plaza shopping center, currently being constructed at costs that have mushroomed to $440 million. The Costco site would take up 110,000 square feet of the first floor of the shopping center.

The 485,000 square foot shopping center will have an attached 1,248 space parking facility and is along the FDR Drive between E. 166th and E. 199th streets. The project is expected to create 1,400 full-time jobs. (Daily News 6/23/08)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Hunts Point Produce Market Move Could Help Clean Air

Although the Hunts Point produce market is the most profitable such facility in the world with about $2 billion in annual revenues, the bounty does not seem to benefit the surrounding area and air pollution is significantly increased due to all of the truck traffic. The privately owned wholesale fruit and vegetable cooperative is threatening to move because the city will not put up $150 million to help build a new $750 facility. The Hunts Point Food Distribution Center also houses the New Fulton Fish Market and includes other meats. Our take on the move threat: don't let the door hit you on the way out.

The Bronx is already inundated with all kinds of pollution generating sites. Losing this massive source of truck traffic will ease the air pollution burden on this section of New York. There are already power plants nearby, sewage treatment, bus depots, trash transfer stations and highway thoroughfares undermining the health of residents. Let the lease expire in 2011. Turn it into a park or green jobs center. Put that $150 million into manufacturing green products. Maybe there should be multiple facilities anyway instead of one central wholesale outlet in the area. (New York Post 6/11/08)

Friday, June 6, 2008

Legislature Fails To Renew Article X Again

Article X is a streamlined process for licensing electricity generating power plants in New York. The law expired at the end of 2001 and has not been renewed so there is no reasonable process for siting new large power plants. State Senator George Maziarz (R-Newfane), who heads the Senate Committee on Energy and Telecommunications, says legislation will be considered during the 2009 session. The Senate 2008 legislative session ends June 23. The state Assembly is scheduled to adjourn later that week.

Under Article X, it took approximately five years from the submittal of the license application to the opening of a new power plant. Power plants can still be sited in the state today, but the permitting process is much slower because of having to complete separate reviews before various municipal governments and agencies. That process is impractical and prohibitive to utility companies. Plants under 80 megawatts can still be constructed without Article X reauthorization. (BizJournals, The Business Review, 6/3/08)