BEING PLAYED LIKE A FIDDLE WITH LIC IN THE MIDDLE

“Here’s to alcohol: the cause of, and solution to, all of life’s problems.”

“Here’s to alcohol: the cause of, and solution to, all of life’s problems.”

“the mayor’s commitment to hitting numerical goals {in affordable housing} has created a potential difficulty for city negotiators in their dealings with developers, who are aware of the targets. For some housing experts, the situation was akin to an apple vendor advertising to customers: Must sell out by the end of the day; make me an offer”

You want to know why a big developer like TF Cornerstone gets a seemingly great deal on city-owned land such as Water’s Edge?  Or why the Anable Basin Rezoning includes an audacious 5,000 units, and 70-story tower?  The quote above from The New York Times this week is your answer in a nutshell.  It’s also the reason that Continue reading

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BELLWETHER RESTAURANT IN LONG ISLAND CITY CLOSE TO OPENING

Bellwether is almost here LIC

Bellwether is almost here LIC

BULBS planted in Fall begin to show themselves in March.  So it is with Bellwether restaurant on Vernon Boulevard, where the scaffolding has been removed and there is a sign in the window mentioning they will be opening in a few weeks.  Further details were revealed Continue reading

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PROTEST -> MASTER PLAN -> BRIDGE

 

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I’m just trying to find the bridge
Has anybody seen the bridge?
Please
Have you seen the bridge?
I ain’t seen the bridge!
Where’s that confounded bridge?

THERE’S going to be a protest this Saturday.  In general, the impetus behind it is to make sure the LIC community has a say in the development of three adjacent waterfront plots: Anable Basin, Waters Edge, and Lake Vernon.  Of equal importance is the request to recognize and rezone these three lots as a whole, not in isolation. The belief is that in doing so it will not only optimize the space for the neighborhood but also for the city, inasmuch as it will allow more comprehensive planning and be able to incorporate much larger economies of scale and/or amortization of concessions. The most obvious example, and one near and dear to The Editor’s heart, is a rec center.1

The logic of creating a Master Plan for the three lots is self-evident, yet the powers-that-be have been completely dormant in recognizing the tremendous opportunity right in front of them.  That’s what the protest is for!

Now, while the Rec Center is the most obvious oversight, and almost de rigeur when talking about concessions for variances or granting a rezoning, there’s another need that also lends itself to amortization, and frankly might be more timely than even, ahem …affordable housing.  That would be Continue reading

  1. and that rec center can also be optimally located where the most people could potentially have the closest walk to get there: on 5th Street & 46th Rd. []
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TF CORNERSTONE GREATLY SLASHES HUNTERS POINT SOUTH PLANS

CORRECTION: The Real Deal has just amended their story and forgot to include that the 2nd tower, of 56-stories, had previously been filed in October.  Thus the plan is basically in its original form of 1000+ units, plus school, and maybe a Shake Shack.  Never mind.

TF Cornerstone has taken a big knife to their plans for Parcel C in Hunters Point South according to The Real Deal.  The latest iteration contains only ~400 units in a single 46-story tower versus 1,200 units in a pair of 55 & 44-story towers Continue reading

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MONA COAL-ICE ON VERNON BOULEVARD

Mona Coal-Ice is sweet

Mona Coal-Ice is sweet

So what’s with the recently painted gold-lettered “Mona Coal-Ice” on Vernon Boulevard?  Is it an olde-tymey steam-punk themed haberdashery?  Is it a spin-off from the ice cream store next door?  Or maybe we should take it literally and get our ice for parties and coal for umm, you know, like burning?  No. no, thanks to a little sleuthing from my desktop Continue reading

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NEW ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TO BE INCUBATED IN LIC, NOT WOODSIDE

The new hangout after dropping the kids off

The new hangout after dropping the kids off

When a problem comes along
You must whip it
Before the cream sits out too long
You must whip it
When something’s going wrong
You must whip it

DON’T let anyone tell you that incubation is bad/dirty/will make your child go blind.  It’s not and is perfectly natural and normal.  Now that we have that out of the way, we are happy to report that next year every child in LIC will be able to incubate in LIC.  That’s because after much brainstorming and jawboning by an ardent group of local advocates, the DOE has decided to convert the large Pre-K center at 27-35 Jackson Avenue in Court Square into a new K-2 location called 30Q384 to incubate the brand new elementary school coming to 54th Avenue in Hunters Point.  Therefore the lucky parents of the class of 2032 will have two local options as to where to send their kids for elementary school as opposed to all previous classes who were relegated to a sole choice.. That’s a 100% increase, and as every teacher knows 100 is perfect.  In addition, it now gives parents in Court Square (of which there will soon be many more – see below) a much closer option than PS78Q.  Finally, we hear that the trailer pre-school on 49th Avenue, which was slated for closure, will now remain open.

//RENT War Breaks Out in LIC – that should have been the title of a story below in the WSJ, as it relates to how Continue reading

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#LICUnited

Inline image 1

The battle for increased school capacity has been waged by parents for several years now, many of whom won’t be the beneficiaries of the new schools.  Though most ultimately were unscathed by the controversy, inasmuch as their child eventually received a seat in PS78, the uncertainty was unsettling, and may have motivated others to move out or not move to LIC in the first place.  Also, in the question-mark that is truncation, it was a factor in prompting some recent middle school parents to opt for the new middle school instead of sticking it out at 78.

In viewing the current situation, I can’t help but think that for every action there is at first a delayed response, and then inevitably an overreaction.  Since it’s been primarily parents along the waterfront who have been demanding schools now, that is where the schools have been going.  Yet any chess player can see that the next big need is closer to Court Square.  The powers that be completely screwed up in not insisting a school be placed in the base of 5Pointz.  In addition to being extremely well-situated to accommodate children from all parts of LIC, it would have been available in time for the school year beginning in 2018.  Instead the community received baubles in return for granting the developers a zoning variance allowing them to build an additional 28 stories.

The words above were written here in LICtalk almost two years ago.  They are especially prescient given the specifics surrounding the current battle for seating capacity/location in local elementary schools. Continue reading

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VALENTINE THOUGHTS ON REAL ESTATE IN LIC

End Construction, hmm...

End Construction, hmm…

 

How about some local real estate data points for Valentine’s Day?  Yeah, that oughta get everyone excited.  First, The Forge, a rental building in Court Square which opened in August 2017 is 50 percent leased.  It has 272 units and was developed by the Gotham Organization and Brause Realty.  Next, Continue reading

REC CENTER PETITION OVER 500 SIGNATURES & JIMMY FALLON

Jimmy F saw the greatness,  but not the rec center

Jimmy F saw the greatness, but not the rec center

THE petition to include a community center with a pool in the Plaxall rezoning has surpassed its goal of 500 signatures.  That’s 500+ residents of Hunters Point who now await the final decision by the city like a child waits for Christmas morning.

Nevertheless as mentioned last week, the expense to include this much needed facility for the community is negligible.  Cut 10% of the whopping 300k square feet allocated to light industrial and reclaim 20k sq ft. of now redundant resident-only gym space from the new residential towers, and bingo: a 50k sq ft. rec center with more than enough room for a pool, gym, studios, etc.  Throw in that the build-out on a massive project should be benefiting from tremendous economies of scale, and both the real estate and cash costs are greatly reduced.

In light of this may our elected officials put aside their priorities and consider those of the locals in this not unreasonable request.

//HEY, did you watch the Pepsi halftime show during this year’s SuperBowl?  If so then you couldn’t miss the opening Continue reading

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LONG ISLAND CITY 2018 RESTAURANT ROUND-UP

LIC now has a Restaurant Row, or corner anyway

LIC now has a Restaurant Row, or corner anyway

Last year’s ‘it’ food was poke, which came and left Long Island City with barely a trace. Crabs have vanished too.  In previous years I speculated baby food and roadkill might gain traction in LIC.  2018 looks to be Continue reading

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