12/19/14 2:00pm


An Astoria parcel with the potential for big development at 30-55 Vernon Boulevard is now on the market, reports Queens Courier. This follows recent news of another Astoria site near the waterfront — albeit much smaller — hitting the market for $8,000,000. This Vernon Boulevard land is going to get much more money than that. It sold for $8,200,000 last year and a Massey Knackal broker reports that offers are now as high as $35,000,000. According to the Courier, “At that price, the property would trade for nearly $230 per buildable square foot, which would rank among the top land prices in Astoria.”

The 37,116-square-foot site currently holds a warehouse, but could be built up to 140,665 square feet. Or, if a buyer also decides to purchase neighboring air rights, the property could be up to 220,000 buildable square feet. The Massey Knackal broker predicts it’ll become a mixed-use build with residential space.

Another Astoria Waterfront Warehouse for Sale, Likely to Become Condos [Queens Courier] GMAP

Image via Massey Knackal

12/19/14 1:00pm


The Oratorio Society of Queens — which includes more than 125 chorus members and top-notch string and wind sections – will offer its time-honored, annual holiday concert at the Queensborough Performing Arts Center this Sunday.

Founded in 1927, this group is the borough’s oldest nonprofit dedicated to the arts, and this is its signature show. The first half will feature portions of Handel’s “Messiah” with Maestro David Close, a 40-year veteran, and soloists Geraldine McMillian (soprano), John Easterlin (tenor), Vaughn Fritts (bass-baritone), and OSQ’s Orchestral Arts Ensemble of Queens.

After the break, the audience will listen — and sing along — to Christmas favorites such as “O Come All Ye Faithful,” “Il est né le divin enfant,” a traditional French carol by John Rutter, and “Gesù Bambino,” which Italian organist Pietro Yon allegedly wrote while riding an NYC subway. There will also be a rollicking version of the Caribbean ditty “The Virgin Mary had a Baby Boy.”

The second half will also feature Jewish songs such as “Ocho Kandelikas,” a Ladino tune which celebrates Chanukah and its story of hope and redemption, and “The Lamp kept burnin’ on” by Long Island composer Linda Tsuruoka. Guest cantor Jerry Korobow will play guitar and lead the chorus and orchestra in a lively and spirited “Al HaNissim.” All the details are on jump…


12/19/14 12:00pm

144-04 29th Avenue
Broker: Re/Max
Price: $959,000
Saturday, 1:00 – 3:00 pm

196-06 110th Avenue
Broker: Winzone Realty
Price: $569,000
Sunday, 1:00 – 3:00 pm

3East Elmhurst
25-40 98th Street
Broker: Exit Kingdom
Price: $499,999
Saturday, 2:00 – 4:00 pm

4Queens Village
99-35 211th Place
Broker: Exit Realty First Choice
Price: $475,000
Saturday, 1:00 – 3:00 pm

12/19/14 11:00am

There’s a little parcel of a neighborhood east of Astoria and north of Jackson Heights, east of the bail bonds offices of Hazen Street, north of the whizzing Grand Central Parkway and west of LaGuardia Airport’s expanse, containing a couple of surprising artifacts. Stop for lunch at the chrome-plated Airline Diner, built in 1952, at Astoria Boulevard and 70th Street where a scene from Goodfellas was filmed, make your way up Hazen, where buses enroute to Rikers Island roll past, detour a little down 77th Street; east on 19th Road brings you to one of Queens’ oldest homes.



12/19/14 10:00am

plumbers-union-long-island-city-warehouseThe Daily News toured a warehouse in Long Island City that the Local 1 Union is turning green. Local 1, which represents 5,900 plumbers in all five boroughs, purchased the former Columbia Looseleaf Factory for $10,000,000. They are spending another $10,000,000 on renovations with the hope of achieving a LEED silver certification. Renovations include three building tanks that can hold up to 19,000 gallons of stormwater, which will be used for bathrooms and fire hoses, as well as a small hydroponic farm on the building’s roof. The water retention efforts will save 2,000 gallons a day. The rooftop farm, which will be used to grow blueberries, was made possible by a grant from the Department of Environmental Protection.

Local 1 also totally renovated the warehouse entrance (pictured to your left), which features a waterfall and ceiling lamps shaped like copper tubing. The 52,000-square-foot building will officially open as the union’s headquarters in January. Local 1 also plans to let community organizations use the space for meetings.

Plumbers Union Transforms Former Long Island City Binder Factory into an Environmentally-Friendly Headquarters [NY Daily News]

Photo by Corey Sipkin for the Daily News

12/19/14 9:00am


Behold the massive, 22-story tower going up at 44-41 Purves Street, also known by the addresses of 44-35 Purves Street and 44-51 Purves Street. We got a taste of the exterior earlier this year (and the facade is going up as we speak) but Curbed nabbed sweet interior renderings. The architecture and interior design firm Durukan Design told Curbed that they worked with a “circle-inspired concept” in decking out the 284-unit development.

The amenities list is long: the lobby has a sunken lounge area with a fire pit, and there’s a library, wine cellar, screening room, game room, outdoor terrace, business center, gym, roof terrace and dog spa. Construction is expected to wrap in the winter of 2018. Check out all those circle-themed interiors after the jump… (more…)

12/19/14 8:30am


Firefighters Battle Five-Alarm Fire in Ozone Park [NY1]
Power Outage at Historic World’s Fair Boathouse in Flushing Meadows Corona Park [NY Daily News]
Towering Figure in Queens’ Development Steps Aside [Crain's]
Five Humongous Queens Homes Listed Under $1M [Queens Courier]
Metropolitan Avenue Turns into ‘Michelin Road’ With Fine Dining Restaurants [DNAinfo]
Long Island City is NO ‘Low-Rent’ Neighborhood, Prices Remain Firm [LIC Post]
22-22 Jackson Avenue Rising Quickly [Court Square Blog]

12/18/14 4:00pm


Man, the Parks Department is really on a role with parks in Queens. They kicked off the community process for improving both Captain Tilly Park in Jamaica and Conch Playground in the Rockaways. Now they are holding a meeting regarding improvements for Louis Simeone Park in Corona. Tonight, the Parks Department is inviting the community to share input and feedback on what they would like to see in the upcoming renovations to Louis Simeone Park. It’ll take place from 6 to 8 pm at St. Paul the Apostle, 98-16 55th Avenue.

All three of these parts are a part of the Community Parks Initiative, a city-wide initiative to improve small and underutilized parks. The parks in Queens under this new program are Astoria Heights Playground, Bowne Playround in Flushing, Corona Mac Park/Simeone Louis Park, Grassmere Playground in the Far Rockaways, Rockaway Community Park/Conch Playground and the Van Alst Playground in Astoria.

Photo via NYC Parks

12/18/14 3:00pm


An Astoria development site, at 30-11 12th Street off of 30th Avenue, is on the market for $8,000,000. Epic Commercial Realty has the listing, which is a 17,350-square-foot lot with a three-story vacant brick warehouse. There’s the possibility to build up to 34,700 square feet here, and the area is already zoned for residential use. The parcel also comes with proposed plans to construct a 38-unit development with a parking garage.

The location is just south of all the Astoria Cove/Hallets Point development hubbub, so our guess is that it’ll get snatched up in no time. GMAP

Photo via PropertyShark