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Union Square tech hub gets City Planning approval

The 21-story building will now seek final approval from the City Council


The Union Square Tech Hub, now officially known as the Union Square Tech Training Center, has received the unanimous approval of the City Planning Commission. The latter voted Wednesday to advance the project to the City Council, where it is expected to receive a final vote of approval.

Wednesday’s decision follows the approval of Community Board 3 in March, and is the latest step in the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP), that needs to be complete in order for the 21-story tech training center to rise on the site of the P.C. Richard & Sons store on 14th Street.

“The Tech Training Center in Union Square will create a new model for accessing New York City’s tech sector – connecting New Yorkers to modern skills training and job opportunities with growing companies, all under one roof,” said Ryan Birchmeier, a senior associate within the public affairs department at the city’s Economic Development Corporation—the agency pushing for the creation of this tech hub.

The 240,000-square-foot tech training center is hoping to open up the tech industry to a broader range of New Yorkers. In addition to the training center, there will also be co-working spaces, and market-rate office space for bigger, more established tenants.

Ahead of the vote today, the EDC also released a new video that details the mission of the building.

Though the tech center has received the support of local residents, many preservation groups have also called for a larger rezoning of the area to ensure that the tech hub doesn’t usher in massive development. The proposal received the backing of the community board in March, but hasn’t gained much traction since.