Category Archives: Politics

SUNNYSIDE YARDS AND FLYING CARS

Let's put another one next to it?

Let’s put another one next to it?

YESTERDAY the ‘official’ study regarding the plan to deck over Sunnyside Yards and build housing on top was released by the city.  Actually, three separate plans were released, each containing a different mix of residential/office/other space that would yield between 14,000 and 24,000 new apartments.

As expected, the study, commissioned by the Mayor, confirmed that the plan is both feasible and at a cost of $16 – $19 billion …uhh reasonable? The release was accompanied by the usual canned ‘huzzah’s such as this one by deputy-mayor Alicia Glen: “Sunnyside Yard represents one of our greatest opportunities to invest in the affordable housing, good jobs, open space and public transit western Queens needs,”

Here at LICtalk we see through such non-sequitur’s and are completely opposed to pursuing the Sunnyside Yards proposal any further.  Given all the non-decked over growth that will occur in Long Island City over the next 5-6 years, which will roughly double the existing housing stock, why is there any hurry to look to the next phase whilst having zero knowledge of how the current excessively-expansionary one will play out?

The obvious answer to this is Continue reading

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REVOLUTION

 

 

You say you want a revolution
Well, you know
We all want to change the world
You tell me that it’s evolution
Well, you know
We all want to change the world

But when you talk about destruction construction
Don’t you know that you can count me out Continue reading

DEAR SANTA VAN BRAMER: JUST ONE REQUEST FOR XMAS

One last chance

One last chance

The subways are a little less packed this week and my head’s a little bit foggier than usual, two signs that Christmas is near.  While there are so many things we’d like to see in the neighborhood, most of them are out of our control and simply a function of capitalism weaving its way.  Furthermore, we’re pretty darn lucky given the bounty that we already do have.

Nevertheless, there is one serious void in Long Island City that makes this neighborhood subpar: 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

DE BLASIO LANDS ON THE OVAL

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Live from LIC, it’s Hizzonner!

 

FRIDAY afternoon around 6:30pm a helicopter plopped down on the oval.  No emergency this, it was actually our Mayor choosing the fastest route between point A (in this case Park Slope via Prospect Park), and B (LIC).  The pic above, which I believe to be the only one of his arrival, was sent to us shortly after it occurred with a note basically asking ‘WTF?’  By the time I viewed it in my inbox yesterday1 the mystery guest was still unknown, but in the ensuing hours a media frenzy erupted over de Blasio’s use of this mode of transport, so I figured I’d chime in too, especially given my local slant and exclusive photo.

While I’m not overly agitated about the need for speed by the Mayor, and Continue reading

  1. The Editor faithfully observes the triple sabbath: Fri/Sat/Sun …just in case []
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2016 LICTALK PRESIDENTIAL ENDORSEMENT

The leader of the free world

The leader of the free world

I’m going to size up the people of Long Island City early and speculate that Hillary will get two votes for every one that Donald receives. Oh who am I kidding, I’m not a very good handicapper, so maybe it’ll be Donald who will receive two-thirds of the local vote.

Nevertheless, this year for the first time in many a quadrennium, we have an incredible candidate vying to be President of the United States.  One who’s had experience running a major business, one who’s had experience running a major government, and most importantly one who embodies the true beliefs of our country in 2016.

Many of these beliefs have been kicking around and fomenting since the turn of the 21st century, yet most of them have never been given any real consideration when it comes time to pull the lever in the voting booth – as most people fall back on what they are comfortable with.  This inevitably leads to the status quo, which in a rapidly changing world, makes most of us slowly worse off.

In looking for an ideal candidate, I’d want someone with business experience and not solely a political animal.  On the other hand, we have to keep in mind a decision that may have a significantly bigger and longer-lasting impact on the course of this nation than who our next president is: the appointment of our next Supreme Court justice.

In my four years writing for LICtalk, I feel I’ve gotten a pretty good sense of the type of people who live in Long Island City, or at least a pretty good sense of who my readership is (Hi mom!).  To be blunt, there’s a fairly high degree of homogeneity1, largely due to the rezoning and the recently built large towers2 that by price point and aesthetics attract people from very similar economic backgrounds, which translates to similar levels of education and to a certain extent occupation, and ironically age.3.

Though this may be a bit of conjecture, I’m guessing that most people in Long Island City Continue reading

  1. a term that shouldn’t be taken in any way as an insult as the same can be said about Bushwick, Midwood, Flushing, etc. []
  2. oh sure, many can start pointing to older parts of LIC in a search for diversity, but by and large it’s true []
  3. If you’re still a doubter, or critic of the homogeneity viewpoint, think of it in reverse and who gets eliminated: those making less than $100K and over a million – between those two numbers, and yes, it is a large swath, we’re looking at 90% of residents, and probably 75% of total residents fall in a range about 1/3 that size []
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MORE AFFORDABLE HOUSING COMING TO HUNTERS POINT SOUTH

 

Aesthetics are nice, but so is playtime

Aesthetics are nice, but so is playtime

The city has requested bids from developers for the two southern-most sites in Hunters Point South.  According to an article in Crain’s New York, it will contain “at least 750 apartments—with 450 or more (+60%) being permanently affordable.” and that “it prefers proposals that skew toward serving lower-income households.”

In addition, the proposal mentions Continue reading

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60-STORY TOWER COMING TO OLD ‘WATERS EDGE’ LOCATION?

Steal Your Face - The Dead live on

Steal Your Face!

The New York Times published a wistful article about the residential build-up along the waterfront, and how it’s replacing industry.  In other words, gentrification NYC-style.

Of greatest relevance to us here in LIC, were the details that were revealed about the “Waters Edge” project and the extent of the zoning variance that the de Blasio  administration is looking to grant to developers.  Summing it up:

“In place of a parking lot, a pier and Transportation Department facility, developers could build two to three towers between 350 and 500 feet tall. If bidders include additional commercial and manufacturing space, they could add an extra 150 feet to the new buildings.”

Thus the tallest of these towers could be 650 feet tall, or roughly 60 stories – more than 50% higher than the tallest building currently on Center Boulevard.  That would Continue reading

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BERNIE SANDERS IS COMING TO HUNTERS POINT PARK MONDAY

Bernieville

Bernieville

Get out your “Che Guevara” t-shirts, pitchforks, and left handed cigarettes, The Bernie Sanders Show is coming to Hunters Point South Park this Monday, April 18.  In addition to “The Man” himself, TV on the Radio will be providing musical entertainment, and he’ll also be bringing along a few of his good friends including Danny Glover and Fisher Stevens.  Yeah you heard me right, Fisher Stevens, fka Steven Fisher!

Doors open at 5pm, and the fun kicks off at 7.  Unfortunately, Continue reading

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GET READY FOR PACKED SUBWAY CARS LIC

Prepping for March Madness at John Brown's

Prepping for March Madness at John Brown’s

The Mayor and the City Council reached an agreement to increase building size allowances in a number of zones in NYC, one of which is in the Court Square/Queens Plaza neighborhood.  In return for this increased density, developers will set aside a portion of the new apartments for affordable housing.  I’m not going to delve deep into this story as I have already done so recently here and here.  The distillation of it then and now continues to be: Continue reading

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