The Hudson Yards project has always been ambitious -- encompassing 26 acres on the west side of Manhattan and $15 billion in development dollars -- and now Mayor Bloomberg is pushing for the site to become a major hub for fashion and retail.
On the heels of Coach announcing plans to open a global headquarters on the site, Bloomberg told WWD that the Hudson Yards' "Culture Shed" (yes, that's the real name) "will eventually" become New York Fashion Week's new home:
“Fashion week has grown so much. It’s outgrown Lincoln Center already. It certainly outgrew Bryant Park a long time ago,” the mayor said at a Hudson Yards press conference Tuesday. “The fashion industry is part of our diversification plan ... It’s an enormous industry that creates a lot of jobs ... We need to make sure that we have the venues for these kinds of events and the Cultural Shed is one of those buildings that would be built to be able to handle that along with others [events].”
The CFDA apparently met with Bloomberg back in 2006 to discuss the Hudson Yards in general and how the fashion community could become involved, but it seems plans for Fashion Week to make an official move are still a ways off. As CFDA chief executive officer Steven Kolb told WWD: “If there is something at the Culture Shed, we want to try to be part of that. It doesn’t mean fashion [and fashion week] will go there, but at this point in their planning, they are including fashion in their conversation."
There is also strong speculation that Nordstrom could open its first New York City outpost at Hudson Yards, though the retailer has yet to officially confirm.
Moving New York Fashion Week to a more spacious outpost at the Hudson Yards has its pros and cons: On the upside, the location is closer to the developing staging areas for many shows downtown on the west side at Milk Studios and Chelsea, and -- fingers crossed -- might even manage to bring more shows to one space. (The current Fashion Week schedule, in terms of geography, is quite a transportation challenge.) On the other hand, the development site is quite far west, and relying on a proposal to extend the 7 train might strike many New Yorkers as wishful thinking. Then, of course, there's the name: The Culture Shed. We're betting that the fashion folk will only sign up in earnest once the site gets a better moniker.