The fallout of Madison Square Garden officials' announcement that the arena will be renovated instead of moved?a devastating setback for the Moynihan Station/Penn Station redevelopment plan?is starting to be felt, and it's safe to say that our local leaders are not the biggest Knicks fans right now. We still believe that the Dolan family, owners of Cablevision/MSG and the people responsible for that reggaeton IO digital cable commercial as well as the ongoing Isiah Thomas Era, were probably just playing a little strategy with the announcement. They are tired of the long delays, and are pissed about the potential loss of tax breaks as well as preservationists' sniping about what a Garden inside the Farley Post Office across the street would do to the landmark structure. Still, the timing of the announcement has a lot of people riled up, because yesterday Sen. Chuck Schumer called on the state to cede control of the project to the Port Authority, which could infuse some cash and perhaps get this thing done already. In the Times, City Council President Christine Quinn basically blackmails the Dolans, saying their action "demonstrates a callous disregard for both the future of the Moynihan Station project and the future of New York City," and hinting that the planned MSG renovation "could run into difficulty" at the City Council level. A Garden spokesman shot back: "We fail to understand why Ms. Quinn would not want to help us deliver a renovated arena to our more than four million annual fans, most of them New Yorkers." Well, if the renovation looks something like this, maybe we could be convinced.
· Station Plan Put in Doubt as Garden Opts to Stay [NYT]
· Moynihan Station Deathblow: MSG Pulls Out of Plan? [Curbed]
· First Glimpse at a World Without Madison Square Garden [Curbed]