This Monday, the House of Representatives approved legislation to have the National Park Service study the John Bowne House and Old Quaker Meeting House in Flushing for possible incorporation as National Park Service sites. Representative Grace Meng introduced the bill earlier this year. The Daily News spoke with Meng, who said the sites are important because they are connected to the Flushing Remonstrance, a document signed in 1657 by English citizens declaring the need for religious freedom. “Not only would the two facilities become more well-known, but the sites would stand to receive many more visitors each year,” she told the News. “And more tourism translates into more dollars for the Queens economy.”
The John Bowne House dates back to 1661 and is one of the oldest homes in New York City and State. Considered the best preserved example of Anglo-Dutch vernacular architecture in the country, it became a museum in 1947.
This week, we got a few tips coming in about the green construction fence appearing on the corner of Vernon Boulevard and 50th Avenue. Well, LIC Post answered our questions on the fate of the lot, at 49-18 Vernon Boulevard: it will be a five-story, 15-unit residential building. According to the DOB application, there will be 12,423 square feet of residential space and 4,451 square feet of commercial space, for a total of 16,874 square feet. The DOB has only issued permits for excavation and foundation work, so a new building won’t be rising just yet.
According to LIC Post, the owner of Butcher Gourmet Deli, which is right next door, has a large ownership interest in this development but he didn’t want to elaborate on details.
El Coyote, part of a small chain of Mexican restaurants, just celebrated its grand opening in Forest Hills. Edge of the City reports that it replaced Garcia’s, in the upper level of the retail complex at 70-09 Austin Street. This is the second El Coyote outpost for Queens; the first is in Jackson Heights.
Late last year the owners told DNAinfo they planned for a slightly different menu that catered toward locals, alongside favorites like enchiladas and fajitas. (Here’s the menu for the Jackson Heights location.) The spot is open for both lunch and dinner.
On Friday, Queens will demonstrate that it has the cachet to attract three big musical acts on the same night, the top-notch venues to host them, and the appreciative fan base to make it all worthwhile. The hard-working Jason Mraz, who went from the San Diego coffee house circuit to international tours in the world’s biggest stadiums, will perform at the Colden Auditorium at the Kupferberg Center for the Arts. This two-time Grammy winner (and six-time nominee), whose probably best known for “Love Someone,” will jam with the eclectic rock-folk band Raining Jane. Two more concerts and two more photos after jump.
Get ready for a huge week with the annual Maker Faire and County Fair. In addition, pop sensation Jason Mraz, eternal Grateful Dead guitarist Phil Lesh, and alternative rock phenomenon The Replacements come to Queens. Plus, three Latin culture events compete with each other, as do various foodie extravaganzas. Here’s the rundown, broken down into food, music, arts, education and outdoor events.
This apartment comes to us from the Millennium 99 condo building at Rego Park, 63-36 99th Street. It’s a one bedroom with 833 square feet, and it looks like most other new condo units hitting the market these days. Floor-to-ceiling windows, a balcony and an open kitchen configuration. It is priced on the higher side for a one bedroom, at $542,500. Given the recent hype around Rego Park, do you think it’ll sell close to ask?
The photo above with its rustic windmill and weathered farmhouse could be in Kansas or upstate New York. But if you look closely, in the background behind the windmill, high rise apartment buildings dot the landscape, not forests or other farms. We’re not in Kansas. We’re in New York City. The farm in the photograph is in Floral Park, Queens. This is a photograph of the Queens County Farm Museum. This is the largest tract of undisturbed farmland in the entire city, and has been a working farm continuously since 1697. Hard to believe, and even more astounding that not all that many people know about it.
1697- that’s 317 years. For America, that’s the equivalent of medieval times. While this may be a tourist attraction and an anomaly now, this is what vast portions of Queens looked like, right on up to the turn of the 20th century. For some parts of Queens, this farm is typical of life up until after World War II. Queens was the breadbasket of New York City, the borough of farms. (more…)
The Department of Transportation is implementing changes at the busy, dangerous intersection of Queens Boulevard and Yellowstone Boulevard, in Forest Hills. Although the community board requested streetscape improvements specifically for Queens Boulevard, drivers aren’t thrilled with the new configuration so far. DNAinfo reports that “residents at a community board meeting complained that one change made last week — a ban on northbound traffic making left turns onto Queens Boulevard from Yellowstone Boulevard — had confused drivers and caused chaos in the area.” The DOT made the change to reduce conflicts with pedestrians and vehicles and “improve intersection operations.” There are new “No Left Turn” signs up to make the changes visible, but local drivers worry that the new measure will push traffic to the side streets, creating a whole new problem. “I think they are just pushing the problem a few blocks away,” one Forest Hills resident told DNAinfo.
The DOT has more streetscape plans in store for Queens and Yellowstone Boulevards, including widened medians, reconstructing a pedestrian safety island and installing parking lane stripes on service roads. The DOT will meet with Community Board Six regarding the proposals next month.
The city’s first Major League Soccer arena may still be built in Queens, after plans fell through to build one in Flushing Meadows – Corona Park. Capital New York reports that “Manchester City Football Club owner Sheik Mansour bin Zayed al-Nahyan and the New York Yankees, which are partnering in the joint venture for the New York City Football Club, are now looking at a possible site ‘adjacent to the aqueduct racetrack in Queens.’” They picked this location because there is lots of nearby land suited for development, although there are no specifics on the exact location.
Another plan to build the stadium near Yankee Stadium in the Bronx fell through, and now the MLS folks are looking all over New York City for a potential spot. (Bloomberg offered the development near Yankee Stadium as an alternative to Flushing Meadows – Corona Park.) According to Queens Courier, some local pols regard this new plan for the Aqueduct with skepticism, with State Senator Joe Addabbo stating, “Exact location and size of the stadium, traffic patterns, public safety and the certain impact on the surrounding neighborhood quality of life are just some of the issues that I would need answers to in examining this proposal.”