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Old Posted Dec 16, 2019, 1:51 PM
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Smile NEW YORK | Special Flushing Waterfront District

Hill West Architects Reveals Renderings For Massive Waterfront Complex In Flushing, Queens





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The Flushing Willets Point Corona Local Development Corporation recently submitted proposals to New York City’s Department of City Planning to facilitate the redevelopment of a 29-acre stretch of waterfront industrial property and surrounding lands in Flushing, Queens. The proposals were drafted in collaboration with Langan Engineering and Environmental Services and contain new renderings from Hill West Architects offering a first look at what’s to come.

Known as the Special Flushing Waterfront District, the project area is bound by 40th Road to the south, College Point Boulevard to the east, 36th Avenue to the north, and Flushing Creek to the west. The proposal includes nine buildings spread across four neighboring sites.

Overall, the proposed project will comprise 1,725 apartments, 1,397,040 square feet of commercial area, and 21,913 square feet of community facilities. Commercial components will include 298,811 square feet of retail, a 714,588-square-foot hotel, and 383,641 square feet of office space. The project will also include 1,533 parking spaces and a total of 3.14 acres of publicly accessible open space.








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Assuming the city will permit alterations of the existing industrial zoning ordinances to allow for construction of mixed-use buildings in the area, construction is expected to begin in 2020 with all components complete and fully operational by 2025.

In 2010, the Flushing Willets Point Corona Local Development Corporation received a grant under the New York State Brownfield Opportunity Areas Program to develop plans to replace vacant and underutilized properties in the area in an effort to revitalize Flushing’s waterfront area. If approved, the development would serve as an extension of Downtown Flushing.
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  #2  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2019, 2:07 PM
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Obviously the area has strict height limits due to proximity to LGA.

But this is a welcome addition to Flushing, and will seriously bulk up the western half of the neighborhood core.
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Old Posted Dec 16, 2019, 5:11 PM
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"Waterfront District", on Flushing Creek, lol. I think it could be interesting if it were allowed to develop with local small Asian businesses, like dt Flushing and its unique character. But it looks like bland highrise housing with probably a Target, DSW, etc.

I'm not going to complain about more housing though, god knows we need every unit we can get. That curved building reminds me of the Watergate in DC. It would be nice if it turned out something like that complex, minus the major road cutting it off from the water.

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Old Posted Dec 16, 2019, 6:12 PM
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Thought the same regarding the Watergate. Nice curves.
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Old Posted Dec 16, 2019, 9:44 PM
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Density looks good. I would like to see more storefronts or other activated spaces.
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Old Posted Dec 16, 2019, 11:07 PM
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Boatdocks instead of another useless riverpark would be cool.
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Old Posted Dec 16, 2019, 11:11 PM
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The big boon is the 1,533 parking spots. Now Flushing has had quite a boom, and if anybody's been there within the last year, traffic is enough to make one forget who they are. Its like pepper spray painful.

Grand Central Parkway is a nightmare and where the cross Bronx meets 678... oh dear christ, the horror!
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Old Posted Jun 8, 2020, 11:58 PM
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https://www.thecity.nyc/2020/6/8/212...roject-lawsuit

Locals’ Lawsuit Slams Flushing Waterfront Development Project








BY CHRISTINE
JUN 8, 2020


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The city’s development review process has been stalled for months, but Queens activists are jump-starting their bid to block a rezoning proposal that could bring hotels, offices and luxury apartments to the Flushing waterfront.

A trio of groups — Chhaya CDC, Minkwon Center for Community Action and the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce, along with a community member — have filed suit against the Department of City Planning and the City Planning Commission, arguing that an environmental review must be conducted for the 40-acre development proposal.

Since a three-developer consortium announced the Special Waterfront Flushing District project December 2019, sustained community opposition has centered around potential environmental, economic and social impacts the project could unleash on Flushing.

The developers’ plans call for a 13-tower complex that includes retail, hotels, offices, and more than 1,700 apartments.
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The neighborhood is “under siege,” the suit charges, with its working class and largely immigrant residents facing increasing threat of displacement as rents trend upwards. The rezoning represents “the dreams of developers rather than the needs of Flushing residents,” the petition reads.

Will Spisak, director of programs at Chhaya, said that the neighborhood, as the city reels from the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, is facing an “existential threat.”

“These kinds of projects, these luxury developments, place the needs of developers and investors above the needs of the community and the people that live in it.”
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The lawsuit marks the latest development in what has been more than a decade-long story of community opposition to waterfront development in Flushing.

In 2015, the city proposed rezoning the same area adjoining the Flushing River, labeling it Flushing West. The Department of City Planning withdrew the proposal the following year, after Councilmember Peter Koo and others raised concerns that included tall buildings impinging on flight paths to LaGuardia Airport.

In December, the City Planning Commission certified a newly envisioned waterfront project to begin the ULURP process — this time under a private-developer application.

That launched weeks of meetings hosted by Community Board 7, leading to a February 2020 ‘yes’ vote from the board.

The following month, Acting Borough President Sharon Lee recommended that the city reject the project. The standardized review procedure is to culminate in votes from both the City Planning Commission and the City Council. Those votes have yet to be scheduled.

The lawsuit argues that a full environmental impact statement was omitted and is necessary.

This statement would provide a more thorough analysis of the project’s impacts on greater Flushing and give community members an opportunity to respond to this document, said Paula Segal, attorney for the plaintiffs. Without these steps, it’s “incomplete to start public review,” she added.

Seonae Byeon, a housing organizer at Minkwon, said that the group will continue to fight the project “in every aspect.”

“The whole process has been wrong with this rezoning,” Byeon said. “Up and until now the (ULURP) process hasn’t really been functioning as it’s supposed to since it’s not supporting community voices.”
Quote:
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has brought into greater relief the community’s need for affordable rents, said John Choe, the executive director of the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce and a Community Board 7 member.

“The pandemic has exposed the huge problem with this development, that it’s totally unnecessary and in fact, is detrimental to the many small businesses that have created Flushing as a destination for tourism, shopping and economic activity throughout the region,” Choe said.

He added that the growing number of luxury developments in the area, such as a 448-unit waterfront tower called Sky View Parc, had already driven up commercial rents “higher than what you’ll find in Midtown Manhattan.”

Flushing’s community cannot handle additional gentrification and displacement, Byeon said.

City Planning data shows 56% of the roughly 250,000 residents living in Community District 7 — which spans Flushing and adjacent neighborhoods such as College Point — are rent burdened, meaning they spend more than 45% of income on rent — well above the city’s average of 35%.

Over the past decade, developers built more than 3,000 new condo units in Flushing, second in the city only to Williamsburg, according to reporting by The New York Times.

From 2000 to 2018, the median sale price for a condo in the area more than doubled to $680,000, the Furman Center found.

“COVID was a slap in the face,” Byeon said. “The rezoning is another one.”


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Old Posted Jun 13, 2020, 11:21 PM
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I wonder what is going to burden people more? 14% unemployment or some market rate houses being constructed?
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Old Posted Jun 14, 2020, 2:14 AM
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This rezoning has been delayed for decades, thanks to entrenched NIMBYs, who apparently prefer a desolate waterfront wasteland over new housing and waterfront parkland. Sorry, NIMBYs, it's finally happening.
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  #11  
Old Posted Jun 14, 2020, 3:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Submariner View Post
I wonder what is going to burden people more? 14% unemployment or some market rate houses being constructed?
They need to build some affordable housing, in mass. The rents in the city are absurd. I can get the gripe of the locals, but at the same time, possibly they should push for even more zoning, to make it feasible to construct the mass units needed. So they can either have towers upon towers of affordable housing if the zoning is there or they can sit back and STFU if they are against anything rising.

Folks, meaning the locals or any NINBYS need to understand that if they want developers to allocate affordable units, even beyond any sort of minimums, they need to make it so the developer has better margins, and therefore, greater zoning and essentially freedom for the developer needs to occur.

The Bronx is showing that affordable housing can come in good numbers, but like any other American city, underwhelming in the units.

Would be nice if the 1,725 apartments could be tripled.
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  #12  
Old Posted Jun 14, 2020, 4:57 PM
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Originally Posted by chris08876 View Post
They need to build some affordable housing, in mass. The rents in the city are absurd. I can get the gripe of the locals, but at the same time, possibly they should push for even more zoning, to make it feasible to construct the mass units needed. So they can either have towers upon towers of affordable housing if the zoning is there or they can sit back and STFU if they are against anything rising.

Folks, meaning the locals or any NINBYS need to understand that if they want developers to allocate affordable units, even beyond any sort of minimums, they need to make it so the developer has better margins, and therefore, greater zoning and essentially freedom for the developer needs to occur.

The Bronx is showing that affordable housing can come in good numbers, but like any other American city, underwhelming in the units.

Would be nice if the 1,725 apartments could be tripled.
Rents are high because housing stock is artificially constrained by construction costs (union labor massively inflates the cost of construction), endless red tape, NIMBY mental illness, etc.

NIMBY's don't want affordable housing or market rate housing. They want to wallow in their own psychological filth. Some may call for "affordable housing" as a ploy to stop development, but few want development for any reason.

The further market rate rents fall, the more difficult it will be for companies to build affordable units. NYS is facing a historical tax deficit, something which the affordable housing tax break doesn't help in the least. If NYC wanted to increase taxes and decrease rents, they could make it much easier for large, market rate housing developments to be built. For a myriad of political and selfish reasons, that will not happen.
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Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 12:46 AM
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This is a cool development proposal. But I'm saddened to see a large gathering of people and NO ONE is wearing a mask during the pandemic, especially since the demographic of people attending is the demographic most at risk of dying from COVID.

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Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 1:27 AM
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This is a cool development proposal. But I'm saddened to see a large gathering of people and NO ONE is wearing a mask during the pandemic, especially since the demographic of people attending is the demographic most at risk of dying from COVID.
That meeting was from a long forgotten time (February), when people could actually meet in person like that.
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Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 1:30 AM
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Originally Posted by chris08876 View Post
They need to build some affordable housing, in mass. The rents in the city are absurd.
I'd bet the majority of housing units produced in NYC are non-market, so that doesn't make sense. The city desperately needs more market-rate housing. The market-rate housing cross-subsidizes the non-market housing, so if you really want lower rents you should pray for as many luxury apartments as possible.

Also, rents aren't absurd. You can get a decent apartment in a good neighborhood, like Bay Ridge, Riverdale, or Kew Gardens, for a reasonable price, comfortably affordable to a regular middle class earner. The rents are only crazy in core neighborhoods, but no one should expect low rents in those areas.
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Old Posted Jun 15, 2020, 2:04 PM
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I'd love to share some optimism, but I see the city as becoming increasingly out of reach for folks and I view that as a huge negative. Forget Manhattan, I'm talking the outer boroughs. Yes, one can get okay rent, in certain neighborhoods, but nothing is forever. The city has generally failed to keep prices at bay. The city needs a ton of affordable units, and also market rate as well. General issue at hand with underwhelming units being produced.

I do share the sentiment with union costs, which do add a handful of issues development wise. I just wish the city would be a little more aggressive in adding units. The middle class is the very range thats being pushed out. I've been on record saying that developers need profit, and it all comes down to the city allowing them the freedom to subsidize those affordable units via market rate, but that needs greater zoning and density requirements. That would be up to the city at that point, which does have a aura of politics and bs in making it happen.

Its nice that NJ is kinda taking some of the load (some very high unit developments in the works long term in Jersey City), but even so, I'd like to see more of it in NYC. Granted the units rising would make most places blush, but its not enough for this city.

The city is really not for the middle class, and this can be a detriment. If one makes 100-120k, your better off living in NJ and working in NJ than NYC. More bang for the buck, and no city tax either. Its a shame. I mean yeah... folks can budge, but your still squeezed like a sponge every month.
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Old Posted Sep 21, 2020, 12:31 PM
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https://citylimits.org/2020/09/17/wh...ront-plan-say/

What Opponents of the Flushing Waterfront Plan Say




The Civil Rights Center joined Chhaya CDC and State Representative Kim Dui-seok (speaker) to demonstrate against the Flushing Waterfront Project.



Lan Mu for World Journal
September 17, 2020


Quote:
The City Planning Commission held a public hearing on Wednesday for the controversial Special Flushing Waterfront District project. Opponents held a rally in Flushing on August 12th to protest against the development. Organizers, including local organizations MinKwon Center and the Chhaya CDC and state assemblyman Ron Kim, said Flushing needs more affordable housing, and the project would accelerate gentrification there.

As part of the Flushing Waterfront Revitalization Plan, the Special Flushing Waterfront District would cover a 40-acre area from College Point Blvd. on the East to Flushing Creek on the West, and from 36th Ave. on the North and 40th Road on the South.

It would build a complex of 1,725 residential units, including 75 to 90 affordable units and 879 hotel rooms, in addition to office and retail spaces. It would offer 21,913 square feet for public use, include 1,533 parking lots, maintain 3.14 acres of public open space and beautify the walkway along the river.
Quote:
Minkwon Center and Chhaya CDC, long time opponents of the project, organized the protest in front of the Flushing library. At the end of the rally, protesters marched along Main Street, chanting slogans against the project. Assemblyman Kim, who participated in the protest, said the project would push up rents in the area and make life even harder for residents who are already struggling to pay rents.

John Park, executive director of MinKwon, said the organization surveyed 300 local residents and businesses as early as in 2015, and the majority were against the project. He said housing is critically inadequate in Flushing, and the affordable units offered by the project fall far short of the need.

Park said the COVID 19 pandemic has savaged Flushing’s economy; many people are on the edge of rent delinquency. And the project would build apartment units selling for a million dollars, and therefore, pump up rents in the area to hurt residents. He said the organization had filed a lawsuit to the state supreme court, trying to stop the project on the basis that the city violated laws and rules.
Quote:
Protesters accused Councilmember Peter Koo from Flushing of standing with the developers. In a statement, Koo said he has not made a decision on this issue. But he agrees that the project would connect downtown Flushing and the currently desolate waterfront area.

Koo said he understands that many issues related to the project needs to be solved, and promised he will pay close attention to the ULURP process. “Eventually, the project is to make Flushing a better place, and try to utilize the waterfront area that is currently not in use.”




I have to say, I'm not for NIMBYism, but that affordable housing component is laughable. Why include it at all if it's not going to be in any significant amount of the project?


Quote:
It would build a complex of 1,725 residential units, including 75 to 90 affordable units

That's 5% or less. A development of that size, if you are going to include affordable housing, needs to have a much larger component of it.
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Old Posted Sep 21, 2020, 1:40 PM
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I project of this scale should really be closer to 3000 units. Get the added density bonus and increase the Affordable count to 25%. Everybody wins.
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Old Posted Sep 21, 2020, 4:33 PM
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I project of this scale should really be closer to 3000 units. Get the added density bonus and increase the Affordable count to 25%. Everybody wins.

That would require higher buildings, which they probably wouldn't be able to get at this location so close to LaGuardia. But at the current size, 25% would be about 431 units. That's a far cry above the 75 to 90 they are currently proposing. In a city with few too many places to build on with significant numbers (thanks to downzoning and NIMBYism), the City needs to take advantage of opportunities where you can do so, especially in the outer bouroughs.

It's a city of over 8 million people, with a housing shortage. And when you tell a community that you are building over 1,700 residential units, and not even 100 of them will be the so called "affordable" units, it's no wonder people come out against it. There's going to be NIMBYism either way. But the people , for example, who can't just up and move out of the city until the pandemic is over, deserve better from the City. Especially in these times. And I'm a little pissed off that they're making me side with the NIMBYs on this issue. Of course, this will be moving through approvals, so there's no doubt that number will change, but will it change in any significant numbers? Stay tuned.
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