That lack of activity on the empty lot at 125th Street and Lenox Avenue where football legend Emmitt Smith and his partners are planning a new Hyatt hotel/YMCA/possible Whole Foods is worrying city officials big time, the Wall Street Journal reports. The project is slated to receive nearly $20 million in tax-exempt financing, but construction has to begin by the end of the year. The clock is ticking, so the city's Economic Development Corporation is preparing a backup plan. They're considering two other projects, both in Brooklyn, for the federal financing package before it expires. Those projects are a film studio on Kingsland Avenue and, why hello there, a 73-room hotel on Wythe Avenue in Williamsburg. A big blow for Harlem? Hey, there's still the Aloft, but those condo buyers are going to be pissed about losing out on the organic arugula.
· Smith May Fumble Harlem Financing [WSJ]
· Emmitt Smith Hotel coverage [Curbed]