The developer of a new shopping mall at the former Bronx Terminal Market has not met a goal to award half its construction contracts to local firms.
The Related Companies agreed to try award 50 percent of all construction contracts to Bronx-based firms when the City Council approved the mall three years ago. If the number fell below 25 percent, Related would face legal action.
A new report shows that the developer has come between those parameters, with just over 38 percent of contracts going to companies within the borough.
Rafael Salaberrios, president of the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation, says a lot of Bronx employers did not meet other criteria, such as using union labor, or were unable to obtain sufficient bonding coverage.
A lawyer for Related, Jesse Masyr, called the 50 percent figure “aspirational” and said the developer did a “remarkable” job by including as many local firms as it did.
The Gateway Mall at Bronx Terminal Market will hold its official ribbon-cutting ceremony in two weeks, though many of its stores are already doing business.
Located on 18 acres of land in the shadow of Yankee Stadium, the Gateway Center at Bronx Terminal Market created approximately 1 million new square feet of retail space, featuring well-known, brand-name national retailers. The site also includes space for smaller, neighborhood-oriented establishments, street-level restaurants and on-site parking for 2800 cars.
A 2-acre public park on the Harlem River waterfront reclaims open space for the public’s enjoyment. The park connects to adjacent waterfront recreational facilities and additional open space to be developed as part of the new Yankee Stadium plan.
The Gateway project will stimulate the local economy by giving residents options to shop locally for goods and services, rather than shopping outside of the City. Moreover, it is believed that Gateway will generate a substantial number of new jobs: it created over 2,000 construction job and is expected to create 2,500 permanent retail jobs. This will create employment opportunities to help alleviate the significant poverty rate and high unemployment in the area.