04/17/15 2:00pm

Andrew Berman Architect

The New York Landmarks Conservancy has bestowed one of its highest honors to a Queens arts gallery. On April 30, the SculptureCenter will receive the Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award, which recognizes individuals or groups that have made extraordinary contributions to preserving buildings in New York City. (more…)

04/16/15 11:00am

bsQ_041615_wheelspur_003

I was over in Greenpoint last weekend for a Newtown Creek Alliance event, and since it was such a beautiful and clear day, I decided to wave the camera about and see what could be seen. Over on the LIC side of my beloved creek, I noticed something surprising. The Wheelspur Yard of the LIRR, which hasn’t been active since the late 1950s, had a series of freight cars sitting in it. (more…)

04/08/15 9:30am

Kris Seto

Some enrichment options head outdoors with such events as a carnival, a gardening extravaganza, and a guided walk. But with “April Showers” in mind, the borough also hosts indoor fun, such as comedy, live music, film, theater, photography, and some 3-D magic. Here’s the rundown. (more…)

04/07/15 1:00pm

Variations

It first hit the literary scene in 1962, when arguments about deinstitutionalization were raging. The book’s author, Ken Kesey, researched the subject by interviewing patients while working as an orderly in a mental health facility in California. (He also claimed that he took a variety of mind-altering drugs as part of his research.)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest tells the story of life at a psychiatric ward via narration by a huge, Native American inmate who is believed to be deaf and mute. The head nurse, Mildred Ratched, rules with an iron fist, but she constantly butts heads with the ever-rebellious patient Randle Patrick McMurphy, who faked insanity to avoid prison for various crimes.

This week, Cuckoo’s Nest comes to Queens. More information and another image are on the jump page.

(more…)

04/06/15 1:00pm

nicured

It all began in 14th century France, when the Black Plague was raging. A desperate monk decided that the best remedy was to “let them die laughing,” so he jaunted through devastated villages with a red-nosed group known as “God’s Zanies,” providing his version of sacred relief.

This Peter Barnes play, Red Noses, was first produced by the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1985. This month, it comes to Queens, but Nicu’s Spoon Theater Company will set this Olivier Award-winning drama in modern day New York City with a score featuring contemporary music.

Directed by Stephanie Barton-Farcas, performances will begin with a special opening night gala on April 8th at The Secret Theatre in Long Island City, and they will continue through April 19th. More information and another dramatic photo are on the jump page.

(more…)

10-30-jackson-avenue-long-island-city-queens-listing-kitchen

This one-bedroom apartment in Long Island City is in a six-story brick building with a bank on the first floor. The kitchen is quaint with new appliances including a dishwasher, and there’s a little extra counter space for dining. The bedroom can fit a king-sized bed if needed, and there’s a gym, laundry, and elevator in the building.

You’d be walking distance to the Vernon/Jackson 7 train as well as the LIRR, lots of restaurants and shops, and the water is about four blocks away. There’s a small park across the street which happens to be right next to the midtown tunnel entrance. We haven’t been by the building, does anyone know what the noise is like?

The rent comes in at $2,350 a month, and it’s listed as rent stabilized. Move-in date is May 1. Check out more photos after the jump.

10-30 Jackson Avenue, #4A [Douglas Elliman] GMAP (more…)

03/31/15 9:00am

citi-bike-astoria

Yesterday the folks behind Citi Bike announced the bike share program’s ambitious expansion, according to The Daily News. The announcement pretty much confirms previous Department of Transportation reports that Citi Bike will arrive in LIC and Astoria this year — unfortunately Sunnyside still isn’t part of the initial Queens rollout. It also seems like there’s no exact timeline for the rollout. Citi Bike also plans to double the number of stations from 332 by 2017, and makeover existing docking stations.

The company Motivate now runs the bike-share program, and just overhauled nearly all of its existing 6,000 bicycles.

Citi Bike to Double Number of Stations, Add Bikes Throughout Queens, Brooklyn and Harlem [NY Daily News]
All Citi Bike coverage [Q'Stoner]

Photo by the NYC DOT

03/30/15 9:00am

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 8.24.40 AM

Well, the LIC Clock Tower is not going to be demolished. The buyers of the historic structure, as well as nearby parcels, told the New York Times that they plan to incorporate it into their proposed 915-foot skyscraper, which will someday be the city’s tallest outside Manhattan. (The rendering above gives you an idea of just how massive this tower will be. The clock tower — which will likely be landmarked anyway — comes in at 14 stories.)

The developers Property Markets Group and the Hakim Organization are using air rights from both nearby MTA land — which cost them $56 million — as well as air rights from the clock tower to build. They told the Times that this development will be at a “Manhattan caliber.” The clock tower will remain an office building for tech firms, and there are also plans to build out a 1.25 acre park at the site.

The developers are in a race to break ground by this summer to qualify for tax breaks without having to include affordable housing. Just to make that clear, that will be 930 new units in Long Island City, none of them affordable. They aren’t the only LIC developers taking advantage of this, either. Court Square Blog just reported that Tishman Speyer began working on its massive Long Island City project which will include 1,789 apartments, none of them affordable.

New Queens Plaza Skyscraper Gets Help From Historic Clock Tower Next Door [NY Times]
All 29-37 41st Avenue coverage [Q'Stoner]

03/26/15 9:00am

29-37-41st-Avenue-long-island-city1

The MTA has awarded 480,000 square feet of air rights to Property Markets Group and the Hakim Organization to build a 70-story tower at 29-37 41st Street. The Daily News reports that the MTA Board voted yesterday to approve the sale, which puts $56 million into the agency’s pocket. (So why did our Metrocard price just go up?) According to an MTA spokesperson, “Every dollar we are able to secure through real estate transactions helps to reduce the pressure on the fares, tolls and taxes that support the MTA.”

Current zoning at the parcel allows for 40 stories of development. With the air rights, developers can add an additional 39 stories. Last we heard, plans were for 70 stories, 830,000 square feet, and 930 units. There will be no affordable housing included in that, so LIC will get the luxury skyscraper that it’s always needed!

MTA Will Sell $56M Long Island City Property to Developer Eyeing New 77-Story Residential Tower [NY Daily News]
All 29-37 41st Avenue coverage [Q'Stoner]

03/25/15 10:00am

lic-clock-tower

Yesterday, the LPC officially calendared the LIC Clock Tower for landmark designation. Though calendared, there’s no exact date on when the agency will actually vote to landmark the neo-Gothic structure, built in 1927. (The good news is that if the developers file demolition permits here, the LPC will be notified and is likely to take a vote.) A public hearing will take place before the actual landmark vote.

The LIC Post is reporting that Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer “is confident that it will landmarked by the end of June.” He supports landmarking “1,000 percent,” and he told The Post that the chairwoman of the LPC also expressed support in preserving it. We hope that this is a done deal… it’ll be quite significant to see landmarking in a neighborhood that’s been dominated by new development as of late.

Van Bramer Wants Clock Tower Landmarked, Expects it to be Done by June [LIC Post]
All LIC Clock Tower coverage [Q'Stoner]