While the NFL broadcast live coverage of the vote from a projection TV screen above the windows of the American Eagle Outfitters store at 46th Street and Broadway, 200 people cheered when NFL commissioner Roger Goodell named New York the winner.
Loudspeakers broke into Frank Sinatra's "New York, New York," followed by a loop of the Jay-Z and Alicia Keys hit "Empire State of Mind." Scores of women modeling Jets and Giants jerseys and holding signs supporting the bid materialized. One model, Victoria Zangen, 25, of Nyack, couldn't identify the Giants player whose jersey she wore. (It was Justin Tuck, No. 91.)
Shortly before the vote, Gary Solomon, 42, of Mineola, made his way from his Chelsea jewelry store to Times Square. A Jets season-ticket holder, Solomon said the Super Bowl belongs in the winter elements.
"It's not like these guys never played in the snow or cold before," he said. "It's football."
New York's elected officials were ecstatic about the big game coming to town, even though it is actually being played in New Jersey.
"No matter how cold the weather may be, a Super Bowl set in the New York area will warm the hearts of football fans everywhere," said Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), an avowed Giants fan.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who fought unsuccessfully to build a domed stadium for the Jets on Manhattan's West Side, said he'd rename the part of West 48th Street in Times Square "Super Bowl XLVIII Street" and predicted the economic impact on the city to be "hundreds of millions of dollars."
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) called New York "the perfect place to host this grand event. Whoever wins the game, New York and New Jersey will clearly win a big jolt to our local economy."
With Pervaiz Shallwani