New York wholesalers continue to relocate - The Packer

New York wholesalers continue to relocate

01/22/2010 12:30:58 PM
Doug Ohlemeier

NEW YORK — Work continues to relocate New York’s produce wholesalers into modern distribution facilities.

Under discussion with the city the construction of new market buildings adjacent to current Hunts Point Terminal Market on land east of the market’s aging buildings.

Doug Ohlemeier

Rail cars and trailers occupy space  east of the Hunts Point Terminal Market. The market is in discussion with the city of New York to build new facilities on this large tract of land.

Presently up to 800 refrigerated trailers used for produce storage and rail cars setting on railroad tracks occupy the 40-acre parking lot east of market building D.

Under the plan, a new facility would be constructed at the site of building D, which would be razed. Market buildings A, B and C would remain standing for as private storage.

Up to 500,000 square feet of new construction would be built, bringing total market operation space to around 1 million square feet.

Market co-chairman Matthew D’Arrigo, vice president of D’Arrigo Bros. Co. of New York Inc., said the market and the city are working on a final design for the new operation.

The real question, however, is where the money to build the facility will come from, D’Arrigo said.

“What mix of money, government versus what the market merchants will have to pay is the key to getting a deal made with the city,” he said. “It will be an interesting negotiation. Whether something will be done remains to be seen.”

Ongoing negotiations

Negotiations have been occurring and the two sides planned to resume talks with the new year, D’Arrigo said.

The process has been going on for years.

D’Arrigo said construction of the new produce terminal in Philadelphia hasn’t gone unnoticed by New York’s distributors. He said the Philadelphia wholesalers are constructing a market that is as big as New York wants to build but at substantially less cost.

New York has certain handicaps that hinder construction and escalates building costs, D’Arrigo said.

The predominant methodology of the New York City Economic Development Corp., the governing body that deals with the market construction, on how it plans, prepares and performs for jobs is different and brings additional costs, D’Arrigo said.

Labor costs and the handicap city government imposes on itself to build jobs help increase costs too, he said.

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