It's not quite the meeting of the east and west halves of the transcontinental railroad, but the steady progress of the subway's 7-train extension and the northern encroachment of the High Line is turning the area around the Hudson Yards into one big real estate boomtown. The Times reports today that more than 5,000 apartments have been built and more than $5 billion in private development has been invested in the area between 28th and 43rd Streets west of 8th Avenue since it was rezoned in 2005. But according to Robert Knakal of real estate brokerage Massey Knakal, the last six months since it became clear that the 7-train extension was progressing on schedule that development really began to pick up steam. The Times has a great map/infographic showing all the buildings planned for the Hudson Yards neighborhood.
All the development will transform the neighborhood. The 2005 rezoning allows developers to acquire additional air rights for their projects if they pay into a special district improvement fund to pay for a community facility (e.g., a museum or theater). This means that the planned towers at the Hudson Yards megadevelopment will not be the only buildings adjusting Manhattan's skyline upwards in the neighborhood.