09/01/15 9:30am

Queens' Broadway walking tour

There’s a Broadway in every borough. The most famous runs the length of Manhattan and continues into the Bronx and Yonkers beyond that; another forms the border of Bedford Stuyvesant and Bushwick in Brooklyn; another serves as a spine of West New Brighton in Staten Island and runs past the Staten Island Zoo; and then in Queens, whose Broadway runs from Ravenswood to Elmhurst and serves as one of Long Island City’s key shopping arteries, joining Steinway Street and 30th Avenue.

Queens’ Broadway, which attained its present length only in the early 20th century, is an amalgam of a number of roads: Broadway in Ravenswood ran southeast to the now-demapped Ridge Road near Newtown Road; and the eastern part between Woodside Avenue and Queens Boulevard is the easternmost section of the colonial-era Hellgate Ferry Road, which connected Elmhurst and the East River; twisting Woodside Avenue follows most of its route today. The routes were joined in the years before the new IND subway was routed along a lengthy section from Steinway Street to Queens Boulevard in the 1930s.


04/16/15 9:45am


The city unveiled a multi-faceted economic development “action plan” to prevent foreclosures, improve streetscapes, create affordable housing, and increase job-training opportunities in Jamaica on Wednesday.

The actions include creating a Jamaica-specific marketing and branding program, expanding free WiFi access via the LinkNYC program, and capital improvements to Rufus King Park and Brinkerhoff Mall Park in St. Albans.  (more…)


Taiwan’s biggest bubble tea maker has chosen Flushing as an entry point into the Western market. This morning, La Kaffa Group signed a contract with F & T Group to open a flagship store at One Fulton Square, a mixed-used development at the intersection of Roosevelt Avenue and Prince Street that is currently under construction. Specializing in tea, coffee, desserts, and entrees, La Kaffa currently has more than 450 locations with distinct popularity in Asia and the Middle East. Meanwhile, One Fulton Square, which will have a floor area of approximately 330,000 square feet, will include retail space, 22 office units and 43 residential units. A rendition of the planned venue is below.


Top photo: It’s in Queens; bottom photo: One Fulton Square

11/24/14 4:00pm


This Saturday, November 29th, Sunnyside Shines is hosting a “Small Business Saturday” in the neighborhood. From 12 pm to 1 pm, you can pick up a copy of Sunnyside’s Shop Local Holiday Gift Guide and a “Shop Small” bag at Bliss Plaza, Queens Boulevard and 46th Street. The guide offers gift ideas at 22 local businesses within the Business Improvement District. There will be free giveaways and live music at the plaza, and discounts at local stores like Bing’s Hallmark, Avalon Florist and Red Wing Shoes.

Sunnyside Post also reports that the guide will be sent to 18,000 addresses within the zip code 11104, as well as certain sections of Woodside.

06/25/14 2:00pm


Sunnyside shopping has a new bright spot. Last week, the Apollonia Gallery NY opened at 48-14 Skillman Avenue. The venue, where Comic Book Heaven was located for 26 years, sells handmade furnishings, paintings, prints, photos, records, antiques, and other home décor items with an emphasis on promoting local artisans. The owner, Garry O’Callaghan, also indicated that he plans to host salon-like gatherings for musicians, poetry readings and artist talks. A carpenter by trade, O’Callaghan will also display his own furniture, which he’ll make in a downstairs workshop. The store’s title honors Apollo, the Greek god of music and art, but Apollo was also the name of O’Callaghan’s beloved pet dog, which passed away a few years ago.

O’Callaghan’s statement: “I wanted to create a mythological and magical place like the shop in the Gremlins that gives guests the feeling of being in a secret place where they can find one-of-a-kind treasures. This is also a wonderful way to meet interesting people and celebrate the vibrant local arts scene.” You can visit the gallery Tuesday through Friday, 3 pm to 8 pm, and weekends, 9 am to 8 pm.


Top photo: Ann O’Connor; bottom photo: It’s in Queens

12/23/13 11:00am


Wandering around western Queens, and living nearby the borders of Astoria, Sunnyside, and Woodside as I do, my path routinely crosses a section of Northern Boulevard which hosts several car lots and multitudes of automobile based businesses-repair shops, filling stations, car washes, etc. A particular concentration of this industry is found in the area between Steinway Street and Northern Boulevard’s intersection with Broadway. This is “the Carridor,” as I call it, and you can spot some amazing rides awaiting a buyer around these parts.

Pictured is a 1966 Ford Mustang, lovingly cared for, and sporting the sort of style which defined the industrial supremacy of American auto manufacturing in the 20th century.

From Wikipedia: “The first-generation Ford Mustang is the original pony car, manufactured by Ford Motor Company from 1964 until 1973.”


07/29/13 2:00pm

Standard Motor Products

A year-round food and crafts market will soon be opening in the Standard Motor Products Building on Northern Boulevard in Long Island City. The QNS Urban MKT is sponsored by Brooklyn Grange, the rooftop farm that operates atop the massive structure, Coffeed, a cafe on site that uses Brooklyn Grange produce, and the owner of the building, Acumen Capital Partners. The market will open sometime late next month and, according to the market website, will feature, “food, jewelery, arts & crafts, photography, furniture, and vintage collectibles, we strive to feature the best of what local New York vendors have to offer.” Hours will be between 11 AM and 6 PM. Visitors can tour Brooklyn Grange’s rooftop farm until 3 PM.

Year-Round Flea Market Coming to Long island City [DNAinfo]
Commercial Farming High over Northern Boulevard
[Brownstoner Queens]

Photo: Standard Motor Products

07/18/13 4:00pm

enigma 1

This Friday Enigma Bookstore, will open in Astoria specializing in used sci-fi, fantasy and mystery books. The store has a garden and plans to put on events like murder mystery nights and movie screenings. To celebrate the opening, the owners are hosting a reading with Audrey Dimola, Jared Harel, Aida Zilelian and Greg Gordon at 7 PM on Friday.
Enigma Bookstore 33-17 crescent street astoria, ny 11106, 718 274-2665. Reading at 7 PM, July 19.

Photo: Claire LaPlaca

07/18/13 2:00pm

What is Foodtown’s story? As we reported earlier this summer, the Greenpoint Avenue Foodtown in Sunnyside is in the process of becoming a C-Town so one might be forgiven for thinking that the company wanted to reduce its exposure to Western Queens. But, if a recent thread on JacksonHeightsLife.com is on the right track, the Met Food at 76-10 37th Avenue is morphing into a Foodtown. Here’s the tip:

Shopping in Met Food over the weekend, i noticed that the store brand White Rose items were all listed as “30 percent off, while supplies last,” and supplies of most were largely gone. i was concerned that the store might be having issues, but restocking of other stuff was going on as usual, so i asked one of the cashiers if they were planning to change distributors, and she replied in the affirmative, saying “they’re changing the name of the store, too, to food town.” it seems as if the managers will remain in place, which i appreciate, since i think they mostly do a good job there.

At this point, we’re not sure whether this constitutes upward, downward or sideways movement in the supermarket quality department! Do you care?

UPDATE: According to a recently posted comment, there is now a sign on the door saying “Coming Soon: Foodtown.”

Photo by Arnab M. on Yelp