08/27/14 12:00pm


Wow — this co-op unit is really something. It comes from the Gerard Towers, at 70-25 Yellowstone Boulevard in Forest Hills. First off, it’s large: around 1,800 square feet with three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a private terrace. There’s also a lot going on: interesting wallpaper, carpeting, mirrored walls and a bidet in the bathroom. The kitchen, which is partially open, is modernized and huge. The listing says it “must be seen” and we gotta admit — we’d like to see how this all works in person. It’s asking a total of $819,000.

70-25 Yellowstone Boulevard [SBNY RE] GMAP

08/27/14 11:00am

35-34 Bell Blvd, Bayside, Peter Greenberg, Wiki 1

One of the great things about New York City is that somewhere in the five boroughs, you can find just about anything. When it comes to architecture, that is certainly true. It’s really not surprising that there is even a cobblestone house in the city, a vernacular style of construction that usually is found in more remote rural areas. This one is a city landmark, and stands in Bayside, at 35-34 Bell Boulevard. (more…)

08/27/14 10:00am

woodhaven_phase-bus-lanes Early this fall, Woodhaven Boulevard will see its first round of bus improvements. Streetsblog writes that work “will bring nearly two miles of painted bus lanes and a road diet for service roads along more than a mile of Woodhaven Boulevard” — the DOT detailed the specifics in this PDF. Outlined in the map to the left, offset bus lanes will be implemented between Eliot Avenue and Metropolitan Avenue (about 1.4 miles) and curbside bus lanes will be implemented between 101st Avenue and Plattwood Avenue (a bit more than a half-mile through Ozone Park). The DOT expects these lanes to improve bus speeds by about 10 percent. Another stretch of Woodhaven, 1.3 miles from Park Lane South to Rockaway Boulevard, is getting street calming measures.

This is all good for Woodhaven Boulevard, but the bigger question is: what comes next? There’s been talk of NYC’s first Bus Rapid Transit route to be installed here. The DOT is also strongly considering Select Bus Service, which is found throughout the city. As Streetsblog says, “When the inevitable pressure to water down the Woodhaven BRT plan surfaces, will DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg and Mayor Bill de Blasio stand firm?” (Bill de Blasio made a campaign promise to bring “world-class” Bus Rapid Transit to NYC.) The DOT plans to hold another public meeting on the matter this fall, and then will release a design for the second phase of improvements later this fall.

First Phase of Woodhaven Bus Upgrades Coming This Fall. Then What? [Streetsblog]

Map via NYC DOT

08/27/14 9:00am


DNAinfo published a great map pinpointing the many development projects centered around the Willets Point site. Willets Point, of course, will be a retail, housing, public space and school development. (A judge recently threw out a lawsuit against the project, so the developers are one step closer to construction.) DNAinfo reports that the city is working with 30 tenants on payments and relocation from the former auto body shop site, and that there are still some businesses in the area.

Then there’s the Corona Convention Center, where it’s unclear when construction will begin. There’s a car dealership now on site but workers are expected to leave soon. To the east of Willets Point, Flushing Commons is now under construction, and the first phase of work should wrap in the spring of 2017.

DNAinfo also sheds a little light on a large vacant lot on Janet Place, across from Citi Field, that sold for $33,000,000 last year. It should be a mixed-use development with housing and retail, but there’s no word on a construction timeline. Finally, there’s the “Flushing Brownfield Opportunity Area Project,” 60 acres along the Flushing River currently designated as a brownfield. Revitalization efforts are still in the planning phase, with a proposal to rezone the land to begin development expected in 2015.

Here’s How Far Willets Point Redevelopment Projects Have Progressed [DNAinfo]

08/27/14 8:30am

photo (1)

Queens Tourism Council Promotes Local Sights to US Open Spectators [NY1]
Changes Coming to Four Queens Bus Routes [Queens Courier]
Residents and Business Owners Lock Horns over Ozone Park Plaza [Queens Courier]
Stalled Austin Street Construction Site Becomes Graffiti-Covered Eyesore [DNAinfo]
Greek Restaurant Crave Temporarily Closed by the Health Dept. [Astoria Post]
Late Summer Scene: Working up a Play in Socrates Park [NY City Lens]

08/26/14 4:00pm


Here’s a lovely ode by NY City Lens to the Ridgewood Theatre, which will be converted to a residential development. The theater stopped running in 2008 and has remained empty ever since. The article captures a brief summer moment in the theater’s life:

With its entrance boarded up, a single plywood panel remains ajar to let some air into the stillness of the excavated theatre. Inside, everything is bathed in shadow, as elusive as the future of the once grand space, now on the market for conversion into a residential building. Everything has been torn down and a dim light bulb hangs in the spot where a chandelier once lit the Greek revivalist theatre golden. A lone figure shuffles within the shadows, almost as if it were a ghost, though the quite human figure reappears in the circular shaft of green light to lay a wire and affirm, perhaps, that time is not stationary.

A group of teenagers walk past the shuttered theatre, slowing their footsteps to peer inside. They do not stop or talk about what they see.

Late Summer Scene: An Historic Theater’s Final Days in Ridgewood [NY City Lens]

Photo by Michael Perlman

08/26/14 3:00pm

Copyright (C), Multiple Listing Service of Long Island, Inc, 2004

An 18-room Malba mansion at 19 Center Drive just got picked up for $2,500,000. Queens Courier reports that the 6,500-square-foot home has five bedrooms, a theater, a spiral staircase, fireplace and pool. You can check out pictures from the old listing here — this house is really something; the real estate agent calls it “one of a kind.” There are also huge windows with views of the Manhattan skyline. The Mediterranean-style home was constructed in 2002.

18-Room Luxury Malba Home Sells for $2.5M [Queens Courier] GMAP

Photo by the MLSLI


Tomorrow Mela’s Cafe is opening at 71-02 Kissena Boulevard, on the corner of 71st Avenue in Kew Gardens Hills. Queens Courier got a sneak peek of the restaurant, which will serve creative Latin dishes. The space sits 90 people and has a bar, booths and tables. The interior looks nice and contemporary, with lots of exposed brick. The owners tell Queens Courier that they’ve set up USB ports and Wi-Fi to attract a younger crowd from nearby Queens College. It’ll be open 7 am to 11 pm every day.

Take a First Look Inside Mela’s Café in Kew Gardens Hills [Queens Courier] GMAP

Photo via Instagram

08/26/14 1:00pm


It’s unique, but multifaceted. It’s local, but international. It’s filthy rich in culture, but free. On August 30th, the Queens Museum will host Oye Corona, an afternoon celebration of art, music, dance, print-making, and exercise at Corona Plaza. Visitors will be able to partake in creative activities with roots in Bangladesh, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and even the United States.

Photos and information on the inspiring activities follow the jump.