The construction of Hudson Yards, the biggest private real estate development in the history of the United States and currently the largest development in New York City since the Rockefeller Center, is gaining momentum. The vast infrastructural project in the heart of the city is set to enclose an active rail yard with an expansive platform, paving the way for 28 acres (and 17 million square feet) of commercial and residential space. Housing over 100 commercial units, 5000 residences, 14 acres of open public space, an enormous school and luxury hotel all on top of a working train depot, the project will directly connect to a new subway station and meet with the High Line.
When the makeover was announced in 2012, two soaring beacons towering over the city seemed a long way off. Now, following years of diligent planning, constructing has begun on the "groundwork" or, more specifically, platform work. Eric Jaffe of Atlantic Cities writes that Jay Cross, President of Related Hudson Yards stated, "it's very rare that you build land. Normally you just build on it." The centre piece of the masterplan will be a $75 million "icon for NYC" designed by British architect and designer Thomas Heatherwick alongside a Culture Shed designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro.
3D modelling assisted in the team's understanding of how the foundations would work. Once they had identified places to drill caissons deep into the bedrock, and between the tracks of the fully operational rail yard, they could begin construction: 300 piles, each installed with 90-ton cores encased in concrete. At the "throat" of the yard, "where 30 tracks converge into four to enter Penn Station," trusses will span across to take the enormous load.