Want to explore the past and present of Dutch Kills, a neighborhood formerly known as the “workshop of the United States?” Q’Stoner writer and Newtown Creek expert Mitch Waxman is leading a three-hour walking tour, “13 Steps Around Dutch Kills,” this Saturday, September 27th from 11 am to 2 pm. Here are details from Atlas Obscura, the tour host: “During this three hour tour, we will cover three miles of Brooklyn and Queens to see where the industrial revolution actually happened. Bring your camera, as the tour will be revealing an incredible landscape along this section of the troubled Newtown Creek Watershed.” Tickets cost $20, purchase them here.
Today, the real estate firm Modern Spaces announced that it is opening its sixth New York office, and second Astoria office, at 34-16 30th Avenue, between 34th and 35th Streets. The office will be around 2,000 square feet (with an outdoor garden space to host events) and house 25 agents. It should open in October. Modern Spaces, which began in Long Island City, has opened an office every year since its inception in 2008.
Here’s the statement from Eric Benaim, founder of the firm: “We are very happy to expand our Astoria reach with this new office, and are proud to be a part of the community. The timing is opportune for us, as we have three new projects in Astoria that will be hitting the market early next year.” Greg Kyroglou, who was the managing director of the office at 29-20 23rd Avenue, will manage this new location. GMAP
We Heart Astoria spotted DOB paperwork that indicates changes for the building at 31-01 21st Street, formerly Rizzo’s Italian Village on the corner of 31st Avenue. The developer is proposing to extend the existing one-story building into a four-story mixed-use build, with 1,639-square-feet of commercial space and 3,945-square-feet of residential space. (As We Heart Astoria points out, the renovated building could still be home to a ground-floor restaurant.) An interior demolition permit is currently in process.
Rizzo’s Italian Village, a red-sauce Italian joint, was a neighborhood institution known for its gondola perched on the roof. After it closed, a few Filipino restaurants occupied the space.
America’s favorite centenarian comedian is back, and as he might say: “Alive and kicking!” George Burns was an Oscar-winning actor, singer, dancer, funnyman and best-selling author during a lifetime that began in 1896 and ended in 1996. This weekend, he returns to the stage thanks to artist Alan Safier in the Tony-nominated Say Goodnight Gracie. This one-man show launches Queens Theatre’s jam-packed 2014-2015 season, which includes visits by Martha Graham Dance Company and Ballet Hispánico, family plays like Charlotte’s Web, special seasonal events such as A Christmas Carol, and the in-house residency of the Titan Theatre Company.
Here’s a three-bathroom, two-bedroom condo on the market at 5-19 Borden Avenue, the Murano building in LIC. It’s an open floor plan with floor-to-ceiling windows offering views of the skyline and Queensboro Bridge. There’s no shortage on space, at 1,558 square feet, although the bedrooms looks a little cozy. (The master bathroom, however, is nice and big.) You’ve also got a modest balcony off the living room at 77 square feet. The asking price is the healthy sum of $1,869,600. Think a unit like this could fetch close to $2M?
By 1915, there approximately 40,000 automotive trucks plying the streets of New York City.
What’s surprising is that 25 percent of them were electric.
This unassuming self storage warehouse in Queens is the last mortal remains of the General Electric Vehicle Company – found at 30-28 Starr Avenue, Long Island City – who were the manufacturers of a substantial number of those electrical trucks.
The large green property at 57th Avenue, just east of 80th Street in Elmhurst, is no more. Queens Crap posted a rendering for seven four-family, three-story homes slated for the site. The blog also offers an update on the lot: “The entire property has been denuded of trees and is in the process of crappification.” Queens Crap laments the fact that this space couldn’t be a park or community garden — the property previously belonged to the city before it sold to a developer.
Later this month, the City Planning Commission is expected to release its decision on Astoria Cove — and affordable housing is the big question on everyone’s mind. Both the community board and Borough President Katz denied the plans on the grounds of not enough affordable housing, and the proposal puts the promise of Mayor de Blasio’s affordable housing plan to the test. Crain’s reports that “20% [affordable units] will not be the final figure. The City Council is certain to insist on a higher number, something like 30%, although no one is sure yet what it will be.” And another question remains: “Whether the developer will accept a smaller profit or insist on a subsidy in return.”
There are also questions of whether the developers, Alma Realty, will be required to use union work — under Bloomberg, nonunion work was more common because it cut costs by as much as 30 percent. Mayor de Blasio, however, requires union work within his housing plan and is also working to cut costs through a project labor agreement. Alma Realty has claimed it’s committed to using union labor, but will not work out the details until construction starts in two years. As Crain’s says: “This could be called kicking the can down the road.”
Ultimately, the question of union labor and the final number of affordable units promises to set a precedent for the mayor’s ambitious housing plan.
It’s going to be a bad weekend on the 7 line for Queens residents. The Sunnyside Post sends the alert that the MTA is suspending 7 train service between Times Square-42nd Street and 74th Street/Roosevelt Ave from 2 am Saturday through 4:30 am Monday. The closure is part of ongoing construction that’s unfortunately expected to last until 2017.
There will be two free shuttle services for the weekend. The first is running from Vernon Blvd/Jackson Ave to Queensboro Plaza, stopping at Hunters Point Ave, 45th Road/Court House Square and Queens Plaza. The other is running between Queensboro Plaza and 74th Street/Broadway. It will stop at 33rd Street, 40th Street, 46th Street, 52nd Street, 61st Street/Woodside and 69th Street.