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Port Authority unveils finalist proposals for Bus Terminal redesign

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The cost of these proposals range from $3.7 billion to a staggering $15.3 billion

The designs that may one day replace the existing hellish landscape of the Port Authority Bus Terminal are finally here. Earlier today, the Port Authority revealed the five finalists and their mammoth proposals for a new bus terminal as part of the agency's international design and deliverability contest.

The contest had been the source of controversy for the last few months, with Hell's Kitchen residents and elected officials complaining that the PA had failed to solicit public opinion or communicate with the public for setting any kind of design guidelines.

After months of squabbling, the Port Authority finally reached an agreement with the concerned parties earlier this week, when it was announced that these five proposals will now be judged by the public. The design competition website allows people to leave their comments and provide feedback on each of the five projects, and the Port Authority will take all of this into consideration in the coming months as it organizes meetings with elected officials and the public.

But here’s a twist: they might not choose a single one of these designs. Per the agreement reached by the PA and the elected officials, this competition and its outcome "may inform the planning process, which will include a larger universe of planning options to be considered for replacing the existing obsolete and deteriorating 66-year-old terminal."

The comments will be made available to the competition’s jury and the Port Authority’s Board of Commissioners. Of the proposals submitted, estimated costs range from $3.7 billion to $15.3 billion—yep, you read that right, that’s almost three times the cost of redeveloping LaGuardia Airport (It’s almost twice a recent estimate of $8 billion for airport).

Here now is a look at these mind-numbingly expensive proposals in videos created by the design teams. Sure, the bus terminal is hell, but is it really worth all of this? Let us know in the comments below.

Arcadis of New York, Inc.—$4.2B

Dutch firm Arcadis proposal’s says it will preserve all the existing buildings, and will only utilize land already owned by the Port Authority. A major highlight of the proposal is creating an elevated pedestrian plaza over Dyer Avenue and creating a car-free entrance to the new bus terminal. This also incorporates plans for a new 7 train station at Dyer Avenue.

Archilier Architecture Consortium—$7B

Archilier’s proposal wants to use the bus terminal as a means to connect Hudson Yards and Hell’s Kitchen and redevelop the existing "no man’s land," as they call it. Highlights for the new four million square foot project include 36 inter-city gates at street-level and 164 commuter gates at four upper floors that would cater to 36,000 passenger on average each day. W Architecture & Landscape, a firm known for several high profile landscape projects in the city including the Penn Station Public Plaza, is one of the partners in this consortium.

Hudson Terminal Center Collaborative—$15.3B

The priciest of the lot at $15.3 billion, HTCC’s proposal sees the entire terminal move underground right below the existing terminal building. They envision that will this allow for "private equity development on the PABT site." The Hudson Terminal Center, as they propose to call it, "will reconnect the Midtown West fabric of ‘the greatest city in the world.’" This consortium comprises of big names like AECOM (which also recently envisioned a massive project in Red Hook) and SOM.

Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects—$3.7B

Archilier wanted to connected Hudson Yards and Hell’s Kitchen, but Pelli Clarke wants to connect Hudson Yards to Times Square, place the bus terminal at the center of it all and call it Times Square West. This proposal looks to downsize the terminal and allow for more retail and residential development in the area. The new terminal, as per this design, would be located west of Ninth Avenue and feed directly into the Lincoln Tunnel.

Perkins Eastman—$5.4B

Perkins Eastman is calling its proposal "Convergence," and has for some reason decided to move the terminal to another, much-maligned New York City establishment: the Jacob Javits Center. Yep, they envision the terminal to be on the lower level of the convention center, and remove buses entirely from street level. The terminal would be integrated into the Hudson Yards subway station, and the project would lead to the creation of a new public waterfront park.

And here are renderings from all the proposals:

Port Authority Bus Terminal

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