NYC Proposal Aims to Streamline Major Projects

The program would help developers save time and cut red tape.

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NYC Department of Buildings Commissioner Melanie La Rocca has unveiled the proposed creation of the Major Projects Development Program. The initiative, a voluntary program for the city’s largest construction projects, aims to improve both safety and efficiency on work sites by increasing support and collaboration throughout the development cycle.

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The program, which would involve a fee, is set to offer regular consultations to developers on planning for compliance with city regulations and help projects begin safely and prevent work stoppages. As such, the program ultimately aims to also boost the number of construction jobs in the city.

The initiative would be open to developers with prospective new buildings of at least 20 stories, new developments of at least 500,000 square feet, projects that add at least 100,000 square feet to existing structures, as well as other complex developments deemed eligible.

The Department of Buildings plans to create a Major Projects Development Unit within the agency, set to support the program. According to La Rocca, this should help New York City’s recovery by supporting construction operations advance as efficiently as possible, while also reducing work site incidents and the negative impact on project neighbors.

Support across the board

Carlo Scissura, president & CEO of the New York Building Congress said in prepared remarks that one of the best and most proven ways to revive New York’s economy is to build. As major projects tend to be more complicated, Scissura added that creating the program will hopefully help streamline processes and increase efficiency.

Apart from Scissura, several other representatives of local and state organizations commended the announcement of the program. The list includes REBNY President James Whelan; Louis Coletti, President & CEO of the Building Trades Employers Association; Brian Sampson, President of Associated Builders and Contractors, Empire State Chapter; John Evers, President & CEO of the American Council of Engineering Companies of New York; Joseph Pasaturo, President of the New York State Society of Professional Engineers; and Domenick Chieco, Chair of the New York Coalition of Code Consultants.

The program is created under the Department of Buildings’ rule-making process and requires input from the public. The Department will host a public hearing on November 22nd.

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