A MAN, A BAND, AND THE REST IS LIC HISTORY

Patrick Carrajat

Patrick Carrajat – just sitting in

EVER the contrarian, LICtalk has decided to buck the trend and forgo ‘fake’ news this week …for the first time in it’s history, to bring you some original content.

BORN in Ireland and raised on West 125th Street, Patrick Carrajat first made his way to Long Island City in 1970 when he moved one of his elevator businesses here.  Eight years later he would also make it his home, securing a 10-year lease on a 2,000+ square foot loft-like apartment above what is now Laundry City, on 48th Avenue just east of Vernon Blvd.  He used his skills to build it out in a manner that would optimize the main residential goal of every single male heterosexual: Continue reading

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DECEMBER FLOWERS IN LIC

Look what sprouted

Look what sprouted

APRIL showers bring May flowers.  Oh wait, it’s December!  Enjoy it while you can.  As I stated earlier in the week, this time of the year the news takes a snooze.  Yet due to the mild weather construction keeps charging ahead.  Buildings quickly add more floors, and ground continues to be broken.

A nice new facade appeared on Continue reading

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LONG ISLAND CITY 2016 – HOW DID WE GET HERE?

Creating the Canyon of Heroes

Creating the Canyon of Heroes

“Since the 1920′s, city planners have dreamed of transforming Long Island City into a major urban center just five minutes by subway from midtown Manhattan on the Queens bank of the East River. In September, the City Planning Commission will vote on proposed zoning changes that would make the dream possible.”

BY “September,” we’re talking 1995, which was when the opening paragraph above was written in an article in The New York Times.  These zoning changes combined with additional ones made to Court Square/Queens Plaza in 2001, were the starting point of the march to what Long Island City is today.

Like many things, it took a little longer to play out, but the end results were also much, much bigger than anticipated.

In Hunters Point, the edict above led to Continue reading

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THANKSGIVING 2016

So much natural beauty to be thankful for

So much natural beauty to be thankful for

WITH the huge bag of Halloween candy still half full and the Christmas lights on Vernon Boulevard having been up for a week, Thanksgiving’s presence can seem a harried affair.  Especially given the abbreviated work-week and expectations of crowded getaways.

Nevertheless, let us take a moment to remember all we have to be thankful for in Long Island City. Short commutes.  World-class parks.  Two brand-new schools.  A soon-to-be-completed library that’s a masterpiece. Continue reading

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LICTALK IS NOW ON FACEBOOK

The whole world knows it!

The whole world knows it now

Hey readers, there’s a great new website with oodles of juicy personal stuff about everyone on the planet.  I just used up all my vacation days through 2020 to wander through the profiles and stalk every woman who’s ever said ‘Hello’ to me, …and those that didn’t.  Not that I maintained an actual list – hard copy anyway.  In all my perusing, something must have gone awry, a technical violation of some sort, because I’ve been personally banned from the site.

Fortunately there’s a commercial angle to this endeavor, so for $79.99 there is now an LICtalk Facebook page!  That’s right folks, in addition to Continue reading

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SUPER MOON AND STARS AND PLANETS IN LIC

...and at night we get less light

…and at night we get less light

IN addition to all the other great things about living in LIC, include the ability to actually see the stars, planets, and moon.  Unlike Manhattan, there is considerably less ambient light in our immediate vicinity, which allows incandescent bodies in the sky to stand out.

Of course that advantage won’t matter much if you can’t see the sky in the first place.  Fortunately here in LIC the towers are not packed tightly in a grid, which combined with the river on the west side and low-rise zoning in the east, provide unobstructed views for many of those living in towers, as most here do.

Yet even if one doesn’t have a view of the heavens from their apartment, that lack of grid-packing/zoning restrictions combined with Gantry/Hunters Point Parks gives everyone an opportunity to view the night sky just by walking around.

Thanks to the clarity here, several planets are frequently visible to the naked eye.  Most notably Venus periodically shines brightly in the West over Manhattan early in the evening.

Tonight’s celestial entertainment is Continue reading

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REVEALING THE NEW FACE OF LONG ISLAND CITY

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A whole new ball game

A whole new ball game

Big changes have come to LIC.  First, the long-vacant red-brick building on 48th Avenue between 5th Street and Vernon Boulevard lost it’s scaffolding and revealed it’s new facade.  In addition to modern windows and a sandblasted exterior, construction has resumed and new floors are being added.  3 1/2 years ago we shared a rumor that this was going to be a hotel with a steakhouse.  One new president later and I’m thinking condos.

Secondly, the two-story industrial building on the northwest corner of Continue reading

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MIDDLE SCHOOL BASKETBALL IN LIC & ELECTION 2016

Keep on running, it's almost over

Keep on running, it’s almost over

“Constantly choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil.”

Jerry Garcia on why he doesn’t (didn’t) vote

THE NYC Marathon has come and gone and now it’s dark out when we leave work.  That means it’s time for middle school basketball!  What, you didn’t know there was a conveniently-located hoops program available for boys and girls in grades 6-8 in LIC in the winter?  That’s because heretofore there wasn’t, but starting next week (November 15) there will be.

It’s sponsored by the Long Island City Youth Sports League (LICYSL.org) and will be held at the Hunters Point Community Middle School Gym ((aka Academy for Careers in Television & Film, 1-50 51st Avenue)) on Center Boulevard on Tuesday nights from 7 – 8:30pm through April 4.

The cost is only $135 per child, but do not delay because there are a limited number of slots.  For more info please go to LICYSL.org or email [email protected]

//POLITICS is like sports, Continue reading

CITY ANNOUNCES BQX STREETCAR ROUTES IN LIC, NEW BRIDGE?

Likewise, LIC might get a lot closer for Greenpoint

Likewise, LIC might get a lot closer for Greenpoint too

CITY officials unveiled potential streetcar routes for the proposed BQX connector in a presentation yesterday.  Long Island City options include 21st Street into Jackson Avenue, 11th Street, or Vernon Boulevard.  All the plusses and minuses are laid out in the presentation.

Of possibly greater significance, and a key factor in determining which of the routes they choose, are the three bridge options for crossing into Brooklyn.  The first one, is to use the existing Pulaski.  Yet not only would the use of the bridge itself be logistically difficult given the newly carved out bike lane, but the study notes that the intersection leading up to it on the Queens side would be challenging.

That would leave the remaining two options as more plausible: either a new bridge crossing over at Vernon Boulevard, or a new bridge crossing over at 2nd Street and running east/west for two blocks across 51st Avenue.  Both of these would mean massive changes for Hunters Point. 

Though my gut tells me there would be more positives than negatives with a second bridge1, it also very much confirms my initial reaction to the BQX Connector when it was first proposed back in February: Continue reading

  1. Negatives: lots of disruption during the lengthy construction process, more traffic/noise when it’s up and running, a serious change in lifestyle for 51st Ave residents.  Positives: a very convenient transit alternative for the immediate hood and greater and quicker connectivity to Greenpoint/Wmsbg including via bike/walking []
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RARE TOWNHOUSE UP FOR SALE ON ICONIC 45TH AVENUE IN LIC

Oooh, scary line!

Oooh, scary line!

IT doesn’t happen often, but there is a new listing for a townhouse in the landmarked section of 45th Avenue between 21st and 23rd Streets.  It’s got 2,800 square feet over 5 stories, and has a backyard.  It’s currently split into a pair of 2-bedroom residences, but come on, I wouldn’t be touting a beauty like this if it couldn’t be easily combined into one grand home.

In addition to great bones and a historic block, this townhouse also has the essential three L’s of real estate investing as it resides in the Murray Park District (MPD) and is half a block from the park and 2-4 blocks from multiple subway lines that are a quick shuttle into Midtown.

The asking price is Continue reading

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