Just in time for the warm weather, LeFrak City managers, local elected officials, and campus residents participated in a joyous ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday to announce a complete revamp of a recreation area.
Located partially over an underground parking garage in Corona, the West Courtyard now features a 39,200-square-foot space with two courts that can host a wide range of sports, especially basketball and tennis. The facility, which is connected to a new campus-wide security system, also contains paved walkways, benches, picnic tables, and newly planted trees and shrubs.
The ongoing battle over which borough has the best restaurants will have a friendly skirmish during Queens Taste 2015 in Corona on May 12. More than 50 restaurants, dessert makers, and beverage providers are getting ready to provide samples of their products to an expected 800 attendees at this annual celebration, which will take place at the New York Hall of Science this year. More information and more foodie photos are on the jump page.
Here’s a pretty spacious two-bedroom rental at 54-09 108th Street, in Corona. It’s a light-filled condo with hardwood floors, decent sized bedrooms, and lots of counter space in the kitchen.
You’d get your own private terrace, and there’s also laundry in the building.
The rent of $1,675 a month isn’t bad considering you’d be steps away from Flushing Meadows Park, the Zoo, and the Queens Museum. The mall, other shopping, and the M and R trains are all about a 20 minute walk away. Click through for more photos of the interior.
Bacon…beer…baseball…be there! After taking rookie-of-the-year honors in 2014, the second annual Bacon and Beer Classic returns to Citi Field on April 25. Part of a traveling show hosted at Major League stadiums across the country (when the home team is away, of course), this Flushing feast will feature bacon-infused products from about 50 local restaurants and suds from local breweries, along with interactive games, cooking demos, and music. More details and a photo demonstrating the beauty of beer are on the jump page.
In the colonial era, mile markers were often placed along the main road to inform the traveler of how many miles there were to go to the nearest big town, or how far away you were from it. In NYC, the now-defunct Post Road in Manhattan, Kingsbridge Road in upper Manhattan (now a part of Broadway), Kings Highway in the town of New Utrecht (now Bensonhurst, Brooklyn), Northern Boulevard in Jackson Heights, and Ocean Parkway, built in the 1850s, all had such mile markers. Ocean Parkway, in fact, had half-mile markers, only one of which, the 3rd mile marker, is still in place.
Railroads, too, have mile markers. I have been riding the Port Washington Branch of the Long Island Rail Road regularly since 1992 and have noticed the occasional mile marker along the route. Recently, though, I nailed down where most of them were, though most are in spots to inaccessible to photograph without getting killed by a train or risking arrest. (more…)
Last month, Council Member Julissa Ferreras announced that an agreement was close to being reached to establish a Business Improvement District from 82nd Street to 104th Street along Roosevelt Avenue; now DNAinfo reports that an agreement was reached to allow more community input. Both Council Member Ferreras and the 82nd Street Partnership came up with a proposal that will better represent the small business owners who initially opposed the BID. A minimum of eight commercial and residential tenants will serve on the 25-member board, with representatives for both street vendors and the LGBTQ community. There will also be one youth board member. (Previously, only property owners were required to serve on the board.) Any BID decision will require the approval of 18 members.
There is, however, a group called Queens Neighborhoods United that still opposes the BID — last week the group delivered a petition with 200 signatures to City Hall. The BID isn’t officially established yet, as a final vote by property owners still needs to be taken.
Right on the heels of this rendering release for the new LaGuardia Convention Center, developers have announced that, well, they’re not building a convention center. Times Ledger reports that Fleet Financial Group has significantly scaled back its plans — it will no longer be a convention center, but rather a conference hotel. (The original plans called for 106,000 square feet that included a 25-story hotel, apartments and retail.) As one of the developers told the Ledger, “The reason we scaled down is because we are trying to take more consideration about the existing traffic conditions in the area.”
Fleet has not yet finalized the details or design of the hotel, which will be called The Eastern Emerald Hotel. The developers are now doing an environmental cleanup of the site and will then move on through a land use process. Guess we’ve got to say goodbye to those flashy renderings!
Last week, Council Member Julissa Ferreras delivered her State of the District address — the Council Member represents District 21 which covers Elmhurst, East Elmhurst, Corona and Jackson Heights. There were a few major announcements, including the fate of the controversial Jackson Heights Business Improvement District, Willets Point updates, and a health care institution slated for Corona. We’ve broken down the biggies for you.
The last of the Willets Point auto shops are being relocated. Ferraras said that The Sunrise Auto Coop and Economic Development Corporation are now working towards finalizing a $5.8 million agreement to relocate Willets Points auto shops to a new work and business space in the Bronx.
And as part of the Willets Point deal Council Member Ferreras helped negotiated in 2013, there’s a new affordable housing development slated for Corona. The 67-unit rental building will be located 54-25 101st Street and will house low-income seniors. Amenities include a garden, community area and medical referral services, and there will be an early childhood development center on the ground floor. Construction should begin at the end of 2015 and is expected to last 18 months.
Jackson Heights BID
It looks like the controversial battle over establishing a Business Improvement District along 82nd Street is coming to an end. According to Ferreras, “Members of the community and the 82nd Street Partnership are near to reaching an agreement that will expand the Partnership from 82nd Street to 104th Street along Roosevelt Avenue.”
Flushing Meadows Corona Park
The push to establish a Flushing Meadows Corona Park Alliance is also making headway. According to the Council Member, she “plans to hold the Mayor’s Office to its promise of establishing [the alliance] by spring.” An alliance would serve to protect the park’s historical significance and green space and establish more community programming.
Higher Education and Health Care Institution for Corona
The Councilwoman also spoke on a $10 million project with Queensborough Community College and Urban Health Plan to establish a 19,000-square-foot higher education and health care institution in Corona. The facility will provide space for training and clinical rotations, as well as affordable primary and specialty health care for the community.
Ferreras plans to fight for funding to upgrade the emergency room at Elmhurst Hospital — right now there is a $11.1 million gap in the city’s budget to do so. Her goal is to secure funding for 10,000 square feet of new space for the hospital, which would double the number of treatment bays and include five additional isolation rooms.
It’s the most diverse county in the world and the best tourism destination in the United States, so it’s no surprise that Queens is overflowing with wonderful Valentine’s Day activities and bargains. In fact, local chances for romance and fun related to this international holiday are so numerous that they run for more than two weeks and include everything from live music to a “love run,” hotel getaways, and even a blood drive for the do-gooders. Another photo and many more details are on the jump page.
The long, vacant lot at 43-16 111th Street, on the corner of 45th Avenue, has sat empty for more than 20 years. Corona residents and the 596 Acres organization are trying to change that. 596 Acres reports that the Department of Transportation is willing to consider a request to transform the lot into community space. There will be a meeting on how to move forward next Tuesday, February 10th, 6:30 pm at Immigrant Movement International, 108-59 Roosevelt Avenue. (The meeting will be in both Spanish and English.) The goal is to have the space open to the community by the spring. GMAP