Much of Manhattan’s 17.4-million-sq-ft Eastern Yard--the 13-acre first phase of the 28-acre Hudson Yards air-rights minicity—is open. The retail center and the public square and gardens, including its centerpiece TKA Vessel, opened March 15.

Much of the development, planned by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, sits over a 26-acre active rail yard.  The first phase, which involved building a 13-platform over the tracks, had many of those involved on tenterhooks. Caissons had to be threaded around the tracks and also had to avoid two active Amtrak tunnels and a third tunnel not yet in use.

There were two-hour work windows, track-outage hopscotch, sudden schedule changes.

Six Main Architects

The Eastern Yard, which has six main architects, is 80% commercial and 20% residential. 10 Hudson Yards, an office tower, opened in 2016 and 55 Hudson Yards opened in January. Residents started moving into 15 Hudson Yards in February. Office tenants started moving into 30 Hudson Yards in March.

The last building on the Eastern Yard, 50 Hudson Yards, is set to open in 2022.

The lead developer, Related Cos., has not made an official announcement about the architects for the 6.2-million-sq-ft Western Yard, which is 80% residential and 20% commercial. The platform covering the Western Yard tracks has not been built. Still, completion of the entire Hudson Yards minicity is anticipated in 2025.