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Times Square pedestrian plaza rebuilt

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NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

With just over a week left in his administration, Mayor Michael Bloomberg Monday cut the ribbon for a long-term project: the Times Square street reconstruction. In 2009 Broadway was closed to vehicles from 47th Street to 42nd Street. A pedestrian mall from 42nd Street to 43rd Street on Monday was opened. It is covered with what the mayor's office calls permanent pavers, slabs of high-end concrete.

Broadway from 43rd Street to 44th Street was supposed to be covered with the high-end concrete slabs too, but only a portion got done in time for the Times Square new year's celebration.

Because the city did not complete putting down these pavers or fancy concrete blocks it had to put down asphalt on 43rd Street and Broadway. The city's plan is to replace it with the concrete paver blocks in the spring.

The reconstruction also caused some chaos for a few stores in Times Square. The Broadway entrance to the H& M store was closed for five weeks because the sidewalk was too crowded due to the street construction work.

If five renovated pedestrian malls are completed business should increase even more than it already has, city officials said.

After January 1, it will be up to Mayor Bill de Blasio whether to keep the pedestrian malls from 47th Street to 42nd Street. But if he decides to allow traffic on Broadway again, it will be expensive to tear up the pavers or fancy concrete blocks.

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