The city's complicated $2 billion to $3 billion plan to turn Willets Point into a destination retail and entertainment facility could be hitting a snag.
One of the city's most active developers,Vornado Realty Trust, will not submit a final bid to build about 1 million square feet of retail space, a hotel, and a convention center on the 75-acre site near Shea Stadium in Queens. Vornado, the Related Companies, Forest City Ratner, and Muss Development, a local builder, were among eight finalists selected in March to bid on the site.
The city recently extended the deadline for submission of final bids to June 15 from May 5.
Sources familiar with the city's requirements for Willets Point said high costs for land acquisition and environmental remediation make it a difficult project to build and finance. The proposed project also could require the use of eminent domain to clear away a labyrinth of auto repair shops known as the Iron Triangle.
Janel Patterson, a spokeswoman for the Economic Development Corporation, the city agency that overseas Willets Point, said the deadline was extended because of the complex nature of the project,and because information about the new Mets stadium, to be built next door to the proposed site, was passed on late to the city.
Ms. Patterson would not comment on the level of response from developers, but she said that final bids typically come in right before deadline.
The Bloomberg administration is seeking to develop the area to spur further growth on the Queens waterfront and in nearby Flushing, create thousands of new jobs, increase tax revenues, and improve the environmental quality of the neighborhood, which has long been neglected.
Another obstacle for developers could be the local City Council member, Hiram Monserrate, a Democrat, who said he is not satisfied with the plan so far or with the level of community involvement. Mr. Monserrate has said he will demand an expensive community benefits package, affordable housing for area residents, and a relocation plan for local businesses, which he said are threatened by the plan.
"I really don't know if the best process here is to rope them all off and create a corporate Disney World," Mr. Monserrate said.
"This part of the district is unsightly, but it is unsightly primarily because the city of New York has never invested in the infrastructure," he said.
Vornado, which developed Bloomberg LP's headquarters on the East Side, could still be a partner in the project with another bidder. A spokeswoman for Vornado declined to comment.