SORRY for the delay in posting, but The Editor had to make his annual week-long jaunt to Sun Valley to attend an ‘event’ with his peers. Fortunately, little has transpired in LIC in the wake of the post-July 4 lull. And yet, and yet.[Read more…] about From Sun Valley To You LIC
“NO Parking Tuesday” arrives tomorrow. Not Taco Tuesday, not Two-for-Tuesday, when the pink signs everywhere in Hunters Point say “No Parking Tuesday” then it must be July 4, 2023!!![Read more…] about July 4th 2023: Primer For New Timer’s
WE lead today with the scoop that a new tavern is opening in the space previously occupied by BLVD Wine Bar at 47-20 Center Boulevard next to Shi Restaurant. We reported back in December1 that the wine bar was simply under renovation, but it looks like they had a change in direction since. The new iteration has the original owners teaming up with Skinny from Skinny’s Cantina across the street on this venture. Originally posited by a reader as a burger place, a quick look inside hints at something a bit more formal, with wood-paneling and a fully stocked bar front and center. The name is TBD, so for a placeholder we’re calling it BLVD Burgers, but we hear they’ll be opening any day…
//Next comes the news that SoFun Noodle Bar has opened at 43-40 12th St. What is SoFun Noodle Bar? According to Eater it’s brought to you by “The team behind the Pete Wells-reviewed Hunan Slurp” and specializes in “all types of slurping noodles, as well as wonton soup in claypots, and durian puff pastry.” You had me at slurping, but nothing like finishing off a meal with a durian puff pastry or two. BTW, Mr. Wells gave it Liang-stars, that’s deux in Hunanese.
The bigger question, is ‘Where is 43-40 12th Street?!?’ It’s in the warehouse district. No comprende? It’s on the northern edge of the big outdoor dining lot adjacent to Focal Point Beer Co. Wha??? Oh sorry, Focal Point Beer Co. is the new name for ICONYC as of this Spring. While the name has changed nothing else has: same owners, same beers. One thing that isn’t the same around Focal Point is that while you can now slurp noodles in their shared courtyard, you will no longer be able to snag freshly made pizzas to go with your Death or Glory Belgian Pale Ale, as Lupo Rosso Pizzeria has quietly (and quickly) closed shop.
//Wow, that’s a lotta restaurant news, want more? Ok, Vert Frais has opened in Court Square. No explanation needed for the location, as for the Nom de France, well, umm, it’s a ramen place. And a breakfast place serving Japanese omelettes and souffle pancakes. And a cafe serving cocktails. Anyway it’s alotta different things and is co-founded by a chef with a Michelin star, you can read the full description in an Eater article linked to below. With that, bring on July!
Queens Noodles From The Team Behind ‘Hunan Slurp’ Is Here – slurp is here, Where? Right here
SoFun Noodle Bar – menu
Focal Point Beer Co. – menu …of beers
Vert Frais Opens In LIC With Ramen and Yoshoku – souffle pancakes too
- and they confirmed [↩]
No more pencils, no more booksMr. Cooper
No more teachers, dirty looks
Out for summer, out ’til fall
We might not come back at all
THE last day of school, sweeter words have never been spoken. In tandem with that comes the news that the Gantry Plaza State Park Sports Field has reopened after a major renovation. There is ‘Open Play’ for everyone at all times through July 8.[Read more…] about School’s Out, Field’s Open, Ja Rule In LIC
EIGHT years ago LICtalk proposed a radical solution to the endemic problems haunting Queensbridge: Raze it and rebuild. Today that solution has gained traction with the current Mayoral administration and might become a reality in the not-too-distant future.
Yesterday, The New York Times published a story entitled “To Improve Public Housing, New York City Moves to Tear It Down.” The first three paragraphs say it all:
NYCHA is set to announce on Wednesday that it is moving forward with a $1.5 billion plan to tear down the Fulton Houses and Elliott-Chelsea Houses in Manhattan and replace them with new high-rise apartments for the residents who live there, after it became clear that replacing the deteriorating buildings would cost about as much as rehabilitating them.
“At Fulton and Elliott-Chelsea, more than 2,000 public housing apartments would be replaced. The new apartments would have dishwashers, washers and dryers, and access to rooftop terraces. The plan also calls for the construction of new retail and commercial spaces and 3,500 mixed-income apartments, with around 1,000 restricted to people earning lower incomes and the rest renting at market rates.
“It would be only the third tear-down in the agency’s nearly 90-year history, and the first time new, mixed-income buildings would be built on NYCHA land. City officials said they hope to replicate the plan elsewhere as conditions in public housing worsen.“
Will there be dislocation and disruption? Yes. Will there be hiccups great and small? Yes. Will cultures be altered and the history be lost? Yes.
Nevertheless the ends overwhelmingly justify the means. Through better optimization of these 30 acres of land, it would be a huge win for the current residents, middle class housing, the city, and developers.
The physical housing units would be a vast improvement to the current dilapidated ones. The mixed economic backgrounds would pull the lower classes up, instead of isolating them. The large increase in units overall would bring more, better, and very-conveniently located housing to NYC. And the increase in overall units would also come at a discount to market rate housing due to more supply meeting demand as well as the initial ‘trepidation’ concession.1 That concession would be locked in for pioneers through rent-stabilization, yet still be profitable for developers. Finally, NYC taxpayers would not have to pay for the improved housing for the poor, nor for the costly capital improvements needed to maintain these 80-year old buildings.
We spelled it all out in our initial article from 2015 ‘Raze Queensbridge,’ and have continued to do so over the years. All of these articles as well as the NYT story from yesterday are listed below.
Rarely is the solution for improving people’s lives so clear cut. Given the momentum, the time for change is now. Raze Queensbridge!
To Improve Public Housing, New York City Moves to Tear It Down – NYT article yesterday
RAZE QUEENSBRIDGE – we started it all back in February 2015
LIC Follow-Ups – “$400 million just for roofing and mold?” May 2015
LIC Go – “the horrible living conditions in an apartment in the Queensbridge Houses that was in dire need of repairs” July 2016
Knock Down The Projects And Bring In The Cranes – “Not because it was a blight on Long Island City – its presence has minimal impact, but instead as a pragmatic solution to the endemic problems of, well …the projects.” August 2018
Meanwhile Up In Queensbridge – “nothing short of a major overhaul will curtail this violence. In addition to the persistence and uptick of violent crime in Queensbridge – largely perpetrated on victims within it’s own community – we are coming to the beginning of a new administration.” November 2021
DOE Proposes New Zoning Format For LIC Schools – “Instead of busing kids out of their neighborhoods, we should be bringing more diverse residents into the less fortunate neighborhoods.” January 2022
- Here at LICtalk, we call it like it is [↩]