Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced accelerated spending on capital improvement projects throughout New York City including “critical” projects such as bridges, roads, schools and libraries. The projects, at a projected cost of $1 Billion, were originally part of New York City’s four year capital plan. Originally a capital advancement of $2 Billion was proposed by city Comptroller John Liu. Bloomberg announced the revised plan along with Liu and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn on October 17th.
The city cited historically low interest rates for borrowing and the need for growth in employment; as well as the urgency of certain projects including removal of toxic chemicals from over 100 school buildings. Other projects include resurfacing of 300 lane-miles of roadways, street repairs, and waterfront improvements.
These improvements are expected to create approximately 8,000 jobs according to Mayor Bloomberg. While the city’s total unemployment rate is up 0.8% percentage points from the same period last year, certain industries have seen gains. Employment in the private sector for the city of New York rose 2.9% over the past twelve months according to the Department of Labor. This, combined with recovering demand for retail and office space rentals in Manhattan, has helped to keep the private sector economy thriving. However, construction jobs fell 0.6% in the past twelve months to it’s lowest point since 1998. The city’s capital improvement plan is designed to stimulate growth in that sector.
We hope your next trip through the city, for business or pleasure, goes smoother as a result of improvements to New York City’s bridges, roads and streets.