Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and Metropolitan Transportation Authority Interim Executive Director Ronnie Hakim announced on April 20 that Janno Lieber, a senior private sector real estate development and construction executive who is the current President of World Trade Center Properties, will join the senior executive ranks of the MTA as Chief Development Officer. In this newly created position, Lieber will take over leadership and oversight of key strategic capital initiatives focused on increasing the capacity of the system.
Lieber will help fill the void left when Dr. Michael Horodniceanu stepped down in March after overseeing the first phase of the Second Ave. subway, the No. 7 line extension, restoration of the South Ferry station and the new Fulton Center.
“The key to transforming the MTA is delivering on bold and ambitious projects that will give New Yorkers the enhanced, modern transportation system they deserve,” Governor Cuomo said. “Janno Lieber has a proven track record of innovative success managing multi-billion dollar projects in the private sector and deep experience in transportation. His unique skillset is a significant asset and will help us continue to deliver on the promise of a world-class transit system for New Yorkers.”
As part of his new responsibilities, Lieber will head up the MTA Capital Construction Company and will manage the MTA’s major capital projects that expand capacity:
– Second Avenue Subway Phase II – extending the line to 125th Street;
– East Side Access – connecting Long Island Railroad to Grand Central Terminal;
– Penn Station Access – bringing Metro-North Railroad into Penn Station;
– Enhanced Stations;
– Improved Rail Mass Transit Access to JFK Airport with a focus on developing a one-seat ride;
– LIRR Third Track – expanding capacity on the Railroad’s main line; and
– LIRR Double Track – improving service and reliability on the LIRR’s Ronkonkoma Branch.
His new broad strategic portfolio will also include oversight of the following key initiatives:
– Signalization priorities – Communication Based Train Control and Positive Train Control;
– MTA Real Estate – Real Estate Development; and
– Alternate Project Delivery – including in particular expanded use of Public Private Partnerships.
Lieber brings extraordinary private sector experience to his new role as Chief Development Officer. Most recently, he served as President of World Trade Center Properties for 14 years where he managed the multi-billion dollar development of Silverstein Properties’ projects at the World Trade Center. Lieber’s responsibilities included managing design and building, business, finance, public affairs, legal, government and community relations. His appointment is a part of Governor Cuomo’s commitment to bringing private sector talent into public service to produce results for New Yorkers.
MTA Interim Executive Director Ronnie Hakim said, “These projects are the foundation upon which the future of our agency is being built. We look forward to Janno bringing to the MTA his lifetime of experience in getting big things accomplished – and we know that will pay lasting dividends for our riders and customers.”
Acting Chairman MTA Board Fernando Ferrer said, “The MTA is the economic engine of New York and we are moving our region forward with an unprecedented investment in our infrastructure. Janno Lieber’s has proven that he has the ability to get results and we are proud to have him on our team at the MTA.”
Janno Lieber said, “New York has always led the way in public transportation. Now, under Gov. Cuomo’s leadership we are again taking on the big projects that will make a real difference to New Yorkers’ lives and to our economic future. I’m thrilled to join him and the entire MTA team on that mission.”
Prior to World Trade Center Properties, Lieber served as Senior Vice President of Lawrence Ruben Company, and worked with clients such as Chicago Transit Authority, New Jersey Transit, and Penn Station Redevelopment Corp. – the agency responsible for planning the transformation of the James A. Farley Post Office Building into Moynihan Station.
Before that, Lieber served in the federal government, having been appointed in 1994 by President Bill Clinton to serve as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy for the U.S. Department of Transportation. In this role, Lieber spearheaded the development and roll-out of the Clinton Administration’s ISTEA authorization proposal, a highway and mass transit funding bill that included federal spending to improve, widen and extend the nation’s highway system.
Earlier in his career, Lieber practiced law at the New York firm of Patterson, Belknap Webb & Tyler and served as a transportation policy advisor in the office of New York City Mayor Ed Koch.
Lieber is a graduate of Harvard University and New York University Law School.
He was to officially join the MTA in late May.