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Affordable Housing In Queens - Hunters Point South | affordable housing queens hunters point south affordable housing lic sunnyside queens
Affordable Housing In Queens - Hunters Point South

Hunters Point South Opens Spring 2015

'Affordable' Housing Applications Set To Begin Mid October

September 29, 2014 / Sunnyside NY / Sunnyside Real Estate / News & Analysis / Queens Buzz. On Monday evening I headed over to Sunnyside Community Services Center to attend the Hunters Point South Affordable Housing meeting. Several years ago the Hunters Point South development was approved by Community Board 2 and subsequently approved by the New York City Council and Mayor. Click the link above to read the earlier report.

The site has been under construction for years, and according to a Related Companies spokesperson at the meeting, the two towers containing affordable housing are to open to residents in the Spring of 2015. Naturally this assumes that all goes according to plan.

Hence on Monday evening, Related Companies representatives in tandem with Community Board Chairman Joe Conley, NY CCM Jimmy Van Bramer, NYS Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan [and NYS Senator Michael Gianaris was scheduled to appear but did not make it] - began the outreach to the community regarding the application process for the low income and affordable housing units in the two buildings.

hunters point south affordable housing aptsAttendance and interest by the community was very high and folks who arrived late were turned away as the Sunnyside Community Service Center was filled to capacity. That said there are two more of these outreach programs scheduled, the details of which you can find in our Things To Do calendar in the Business section. Click these links to gain a broader perspective of the Long Island City Neighborhood in which these units reside, as well as of the LIC real estate market for apts and condos or the Long Island City real estate market in general.

Full Report Contains Slides & Info On Qualification & Application Process For Hunters Point South Affordable Housing Units In LIC & Evaluation Of Affordability Versus Income & Apt Rents In LIC

Click here to read the rest of our report, including a photo slide show of the presentation of Affordable Housing in Hunters Point South in LIC Queens. I left out most of the presentation that dealt with how to set up a Housing Connect Profile and how to fill out the online application as it seemed pretty straightforward and you can also call the NYC Housing Authority [aka NYCHA] if you need help.



LIC Summit:  Business in LIC | lic summit lic photos lic real estate lic business
LIC Summit: Business in LIC

Guiding LIC Neighborhood Evolution?

LIC Summit Conference Takes A Holistic View Of Community

June 17, 2014 / Long Island City Neighborhood / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. I attended the first annual LIC Summit which was held at the Museum of the Moving Image and organized by the LIC Partnership. The conference ran all day, with lectures and panel discussions about all things Long Island City.

The first half of the day included discussions about the film industry and the LIC commercial and industrial real estate market. And the second half of the day included panels on residential real estate, but also on the possibilities of evolving a technology sector in LIC and an end-of-day session dedicated to the ongoing evolution of arts and culture in the neighborhood.

I attended the afternoon sessions to listen to the panel discussions about developing a technology sector in Long Island City, and a panel discussion on how to continue nurturing arts & culture in the LIC neighborhood, as many rents and real estate prices have risen to Manhattan-comparable levels.

Click here to read our report on the LIC Summit & photos.



LIC Real Estate - Long Island City Partnership Real Estate Breakfast | long island city real estate lic real estate queens nyc
LIC Real Estate - Long Island City Partnership Real Estate Breakfast

LIC Real Estate Breakfast

LIC Partnership Breakfast Projects Confident & Competitive Tone

April 23, 2014 / LIC Neighborhood / LIC Real Estate / Queens Buzz. I attended the LIC Partnership Real Estate Breakfast on Wednesday morning at the Con Edison Learning Center in LIC. The past couple of years the event had been held at Court Square Place on 44th Road in LIC, to a standing-room-only crowd. The event attendance continues to grow, and the move to the Con Ed Learning Center made seating possible for everyone in attendance.

The 8 am breakfast is followed by a moderated discussion panel of speakers representing a cross section of LIC real estate investors, real estate managers, retail or restaurant operators and a reporter who covers and is familiar with the LIC real estate market. The discussion provides a mix of perspectives and opinions about what’s happening in LIC.

A conglomeration of LIC real estate commercial, industrial and housing stock is shown in the photo to your right. Quite a number of aspects about it were discussed at the breakfast as recorded in this report.

This year the panel included … click here to read the rest of our report about LIC real estate, including photos of the LIC Partnership Real Estate Breakfast.



Steinway Mansion Under Contract | steinway mansion under contract steinway mansion under contract
Steinway Mansion Under Contract

Updated - Steinway Mansion Under Contract To Private Buyer

Historic Mansion Was Built By Early NYC Technologist & Later Bought By Renaissance Man

Great Opportunity For Queens Officials  To Act On Their Speeches About Nurturing Culture, Historic Preservation & Tourism

March 12, 2014 / Astoria Neighborhood / Real Estate In Queens / News & Opinion. Queens Buzz. Well, the saga is almost over. NYC and Queens government officials are about to let slip into private hands, the greatest historical relic of the 1800's in Queens. And what could have been - and could still be - one of the greatest historic sites / historic tourist attractions of Queens.

IMAGINE YOURSELF HANGING OUT ON THE MANSION GROUNDS ... & read on ...

It's not that Queens and NYC government officials haven't had a chance to save it. The historic mansion, which was landmarked for its historic signficance decades ago [landmarking prevents changes to outside of the structure], came on the market in August of 2010. The asking prices has been between $2 and $4 million, which given that far smaller homes with no significance are already selling for over $1 million in the Astoria neighborhood, it seemed like a reasonable asking price.

Click here to read the rest of our report about the Steinway Mansion Under Contract. The story includes photos and links to other stories we've done over the years about the Steinway Mansion and it's inhabitants and their endeavors. The story also includes the business case for taking the Steinway Mansion public and transforming it into a museum / cultural destination for all of Queens, NYC & the world.



 

Jamaica Real Estate In Queens NYC | jamaica real estate nyc realtors condos apartments in jamaica queens nyc real estate commercial retail restaurant space in jamaica ny
Jamaica Real Estate In Queens NYC

Jamaica Real Estate - The Art Of Selling

Jamaica Center BID & The Greater Jamaica Development Corporation Talk About The Re-Emergence Of A Vibrant Commercial Center

Updated May 3, 2014 / December 3, 2013 / Jamaica NY Real Estate / Jamaica NY / Queens Buzz. Earlier this month I attended an event hosted by the Jamaica Center BID to talk about real estate and commercial opportunities in the Jamaica neighborhood of Queens.

Jamaica is one of the largest and most vibrant commercial areas in Queens, and the event was designed to talk about Jamaica in that light.

I arrived a bit early and met with Felicia Tunnah, the new Executive Director of the Jamaica Center BID [Business Improvement District]. It seems the weather, traffic congestion and the subways had conspired to delay speakers, attendees and possibly the event, but it wasn't too long of a wait before the meeting began.

The delay gave all of us a bit of time to enjoy the food and beverages being served by local restaurants and a caterer. City Ribs, a small chain started by a locally raised entrepreneur served ... well ... ribs. Sangria Catering served a fresh salad and chicken dish and Applebee's served dessert.

Click here to read more about real estate in Jamaica NY and click here to read the rest of our report including photo slide show of the meeting about real estate in Jamaica Queens NYC.



 


Queens Economy On The Mend

Overall Employment Up, Unemployment Down & ... more

queens businessDecember 16, 2013 / Long Island City LIC / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. On Friday I attended the presentation of an Economic Snapshot of Queens by State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli at Silver Cup Studios in Long Island City.

There was a large contingent of Queens government officials in attendance of the presentation - ranging in office from Borough President-elect, to City Councilmembers, to State Assemblypersons, to State Senators [see photo].

The news was good of course, as the Queens economy is on the mend. Unemployment is down, in spite of a growing labor force. And total jobs in Queens are estimated to be up 12,000 to about 882,000; while the private sector employment in Queens represents over a half million of that number. The event was sponsored by the Queens Economic Development Corporation.

We'll post more about the changes in the Queens economy later this week / month - including some contrarian points of view we picked up on the street. In the meantime you can click into a report we did about the different categories of Queens employment we did in March 2011, or into an update of Queens unemployment picture which we did in December 2012. And just last week we posted an update on Queens current unemployment statistics versus NYC and prior year. Enjoy.

 


Queens Adds 12,000 New Jobs vs 2012

Unemployment Down & Labor Force Size Up

queens unemployment rate 2013December 8, 2013 / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. Queens County continues to beat NYC handily with respect to having a lower unemployment rate. Queens had an unemployment rate of 8.0% in October 2013 versus an unemployment rate of 8.7% in NYC as a whole. Both of these numbers are improved versus 2012 when the NYC rate was 9.0% and the Queens County unemployment rate was 8.1%.

You can see in the chart to your right that the unemployment rates for both NYC [broken lines] and Queens [solid lines] in 2013 are lower than in 2012.

While the unemployment rates remain high relative to historic norms, part of the reason is that the labor force is growing again as people enter or re-enter the workforce in search of jobs in an improving economy. In NYC as a whole, employment has grown by nearly 65,000 positions versus October of 2012, and now stands at 3.7 million jobs. Queens employment is up about 12,000 new jobs and now stands at approximately 882,000 positions. Queens makes up about a quarter of the workforce of NYC.

 



Leroy Comrie Named QBP Deputy

Katz Names Comrie Deputy Queens Borough President

leroy comrie deputy queens borough presidentDecember 3, 2013 / Jamaica Neighborhood / Queens Politics / Queens Buzz. We attended a business meeting in Jamaica on Tuesday afternoon where we learned that Leroy Comrie had just been selected to be the Deputy Queens Borough President. Melinda Katz, Queens Borough President-elect made the announcement earlier in the day.

We've covered a number of events sponsored by or in which Leroy Comrie participated and found him to be well versed in borough issues, hard working and a soft spoken government official who works behind-the-scenes. City Councilman Comrie served two terms in the NYC Council serving the Jamaica and surrounding neighborhoods of St Albans, Rosedale, Cambria Heights and Hollis. During his tenure in office Comrie served as the Democratic Majority Whip, and for a period was head of the Queens delegation.

Shortly after Comrie took office in 2002 [succeeding former City Councilman Archie Spigner] the JFK Airtrain began operations between JFK Airport and the Jamaica railroad and subway station [December 2003]. Comrie was also City Councilmember during the transformation / renovation of the First Dutch Reformed Church into Jamaica Performing Arts Center - which was completed in 2009. During Comrie's tenure as City Councilmember, the Jamaica area was re-zoned [along with the rest of Queens] to accommodate building and growth.

We'll post more about these evolving events at a later date.




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How The Other Half Lives

lic real estate long island city real estateSeptember 23, 2013 / Long Island City Neighborhood / Queens Real Estate / Queens Buzz. I attended a reception hosted by TF Cornerstone in late September to celebrate the official opening of their fifth property. The building had been completed earlier this year and the first tenants had moved in sometime in May. I understand they've rented about 70% of the units, so they've been moving briskly.

I visited a couple of the units for rent, including a studio that started at about $2,300 per month and a two bedroom corner that likely rented for something like $5,000 per month [give or take several hundred]. To those of us who live in Queens, these are expensive units, but to those who live in Manhattan - given the views and amenities - these are good value. Like the headline says : )

We'll have more in late September / early October, including a photo slide show, of some of the new properties currently lining the LIC waterfront.


NYC Municipal Election 2013 | nyc municipal elections 2013 queens borough president debates qptv
NYC Municipal Election 2013

NYC Municipal Elections 2013

NYC Mayor, Queens Borough President & Six Ballot Proposals

November 5, 2013 / Flushing Neighborhood / Queens Government / Queens Buzz. On Tuesday voters get to decide who will run the city for the next four years. You get to weigh in on who will be the next NYC Mayor, Queens Borough President, City Comptroller, Public Advocate and City Councilmembers.

There are also six NY State Ballot proposals some of which are changes to the Constitution: 1) whether to authorize casino gambling in NYS, 2) a credit for qualified veterans with disabilities in the civil service, 3) exclusion of sewage treatment facility investments from county and municipal constitutional debt limits, 4) proposal to have NYS give up land rights in the Adirondacks to private enterprise in an exchange deal, 5) proposal to allow a private company to conduct mining operations on forest preserve land in a trade deal and 6) extending the length of time judges may serve past the age of 70.

Click here for our coverage of the NYC Municipal Elecitons, including details of the controversial Queens Borough President debate between Melinda Katz and Tony Arcabascio at QPTV in Flushing in October.  Story & photos by Michael Wood.



NYC Mayoral Candidates Forum

Record Homeless In NYC Shelters & NYC Developers

nyc mayoral candidates forumApril 15, 2013 / Queens Government / Queens Buzz. I attended a Mayoral Forum last week at NYU in Manhattan where the six Mayoral candidates answered questions posed by Brian Lehrer of WNYC. The event was hosted by the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy and the topic for discussion was real estate development, housing and urban policy.

One of the things I learned was that NYC has record numbers living in its homeless shelters and that over 20,000 school age children are now living in homeless shelters. This topic came up time and again and all of the candidates said that the current administration was clearly not doing enough to address the problem.

The candidates also talked about all of the new development projects going on in NYC. Many of the candidates said the Administration was not negotiating hard enough to obtain more concessions / better deals from NYC developers who have profited greatly by virtue of help and incentives given by the city.

We'll have more on this discussion later in the month.


Queens Businss News - Brief Reports About Business in Queens | queens business news news about business and economics in queens ny
Queens Businss News - Brief Reports About Business in Queens

Legislative Agendas For Western Queens

March 9, 2013 / Long Island City / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. I attended a Legislative breakfast hosted by the Long Island City Partnership on Friday. NYS Senator Michael Gianaris and NYC Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer were on hand to talk about what is going on legislatively in Albany and downtown at city hall.

EDUCATION & QUEENS SCHOOLS. Education and school closings were discussed with both government officials opposing the approach being taken by the Mayor to close Queens high schools. It was noted that Senator Gianaris graduated from LIC H.S. and then went onto graduate from Harvard, that Assemblywoman Nolan graduated from Ridgewood H.S. and went onto graduate from NYU and that NYC Councilmember Van Bramer graduated from Bryant H.S. and went onto graduate from St. John's College. All three of these high schools were on the chopping block in Spring of 2012 [click here for our Spring 2012 report on Queens high school closings].

gayle baron lic partnership photosSchool construction was also discussed. Currently the facilities at many Queens schools are at, near or even over capacity. Hence school construction is something these government officials believe is important going forward, given the growth of the borough.

HIGH TECH JOBS / TAX BREAKS. They talked about the pending development of a high tech college campus on Roosevelt Island in the coming decade. They saw this as a potential source of good jobs in the area, given Queens proximity to the campus and talked about the possibility of using tax breaks to incent start ups to stay in NYC. They cited the TV Film Industry Tax breaks given several years ago as being good for the TV film industry in Queens.

POWER INDUSTRY IN QUEENS. They also talked about the power industry in Queens. Queens is the source of 60% of all of NYC's power generation. The old Poletti Power Plant is in the process of being de-constructed, and the newer power plants have been able to continue to provide power without disruption.

jimmy van bramer photo michael gianaris photoPARKING IN LIC. Lastly, but not least, Michele Beaudoin of BRG Realty in LIC inquired about future plans for managing the parking situation in LIC. Unbeknownst to most folks, LIC remain the only neighborhood that does not have alternative side parking regulations, which are used to eliminate 'car storage' on city streets, while simultaneously enabling street cleaning. LIC is also the only neighborhood in NYC that does not receive street cleaning services.

We were told that the Department of Transporation is not interested in building any new city parking lots. And that the LIC community is deeply divided on this issue, but that something must be done, as the parking congestion in LIC continues to grow.

Click here to read other brief reports containing Queens Business News.



Queens Business Meetings - Business Events & Seminars in Queens | Queens business meetings business events business seminars queens business events in lic business in astoria business meetings in flushing jackson heights corona jamaica ny long island city sunnyside woodside entrepreneur meetings technology meetings in queens ny
Queens Business Meetings - Business Events & Seminars in Queens

Queens Business Meetings

Queens NY / March 14, 2013. This section contains business meetings, business events, business seminars and Queens for the Astoria, Jackson Heights, Elmhurst, Long Island City, LIC, Sunnyside, Woodside, Jamaica, Forest Hills, Flushing, Corona neighborhoods in Queens NY for the month of March of 2013.

Click here to view the Queens Business Events Calendar for the month of March 2013.




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Real Estate & Development In Queensqueens real estate queens real estate


LIC Real Estate - Apartments, Condos & Office Rentals & Sales | lic real estate long island city real estate apartments for rent condos for sale office space for rent & sale
LIC Real Estate - Apartments, Condos & Office Rentals & Sales

LIC Real Estate: New Face of a Changing Borough

Real Estate Development Continues, Spreading North & East

October 1, 2013 / Long Island City Neighborhood / LIC Real Estate / Queens Real Estate / Queens Buzz. I, like many in the borough, have been watching in near amazement at the rapid pace of real estate development in Long Island City. On September 18th of 2013, I attended the Grand Opening of 4545 Center Blvd, the fifth of the six TF Cornerstone buildings to go up along the Long Island City waterfront.

As you will see from the photos in the slide show at the end of the story, the apartments are beautiful. The new high rise is an airy, modern building with amenities, and apartments that have breathtaking views of the Manhattan skyline and the Queensboro Bridge. I saw a studio and corner two-bedroom apartment, which rent for about $2,300 and $5,500 per month respectively – so it’s not only the views that are breathtaking, but the rents as well. Five of the six TF Cornerstone buildings along Center Blvd in LIC are rentals, and only the condominiums in The View [the only building TF Cornerstone named] were for sale.

Click here for a story about LIC real estate including a bit of the history of TF Cornerstone, Rockrose Real Estate and real estate development in the LIC neighborhood of Queens.



LIC Partnership - Networking Event | lic partnership network event
LIC Partnership - Networking Event

LIC Partnership Networking Event

Changing of the Guard, New Store Coming To Queens Plaza, New Restaurants in Dutch Kills, Jason Sheftell's Death & more at the Foundry in LIC

August / June 2013 / Long Island City / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. On August 14th, the LIC Partnership held a farewell and thank you party for Gayle Baron, Executive Director of the LIC Partnership.

Unfortunately I didn't make that event, but on June 20th I attended a Spring Gathering hosted by the LIC Partnership at the Foundry on 13th Street in Long Island City where I learned that Dan Miner was about to leave the LIC Partnership.

This report is primarily about the Spring Networking event at the Foundry. Shown in the photo to your right are Gayle Baron, Gary Kesner and Dan Miner at the LIC Partnership Networking event at the Foundry in LIC.

Dan Miner Departs For Manhattan Position

The weather was perfect as I made my way to the Foundry in LIC. The sun had headed west and down behind the Queensboro Bridge and NYC skyline. I entered the Foundry some time after the networking party was in full motion and began to mingle.  One of the first things I learned was that Dan Miner, the Sr. VP of the LIC Partnership, was moving onto greener pastures in Manhattan. Dan will become the District Manager of Community Board 6 in that borough.

Click here to read more about the changing of the guard at the LIC Partnership and general news bits from the Long Island City neighborhood.



LIC Real Estate Market Update

LICP Real Estate Forum Projects Confident Tone

lic real estateMay 14, 2013 / LIC Neighborhood / LIC Real Estate / Queens Buzz. The LIC Partnership hosts an annual real estate forum that has sold out for the past several years. Each year they invite a cross section of speakers to opine on different facets of buying, selling and renting real estate in Long Island City.

I've attended the forum the past four years and find the forum to be an informative update of what's doing in the LIC real estate market. This year the speakers talked about the LIC market as one that has not only arrived, but of a real estate market that will stay.

You'll be able to click here later this week for a full report of the LIC Partnership Real Estate Forum. In the photo above are the guest speakers seated at the table with LICP Chairman, Gary Kesner and LIC President, Gayle Baron with their backs to the camera.


CB Votes Split On USTA Expansion Plan

usta expansion plans in flushing meadows corona park fmcpMarch 14, 2013 / Flushing Corona / Issues Facing Queens / Queens Buzz. The USTA has asked the city of New York to give it .68 of an acre of Flushing Meadows Corona Park so that it can proceed with an expansion plan. The expansion plan is estimated to increase the sports complex capacity for the U.S. Open by about a third, while increasing the USTA footprint in the park by .68 of an acre. The USTA informed the audience attending the Community Board 3 meeting that this will result in more jobs in Queens. They also talked about the positive estimated annual $784 million economic impact that the USTA has had on NYC - according to a study done by a private consulting firm named AKRF, Inc.

The detractors informed the audience that this is the first step in a much larger effort toward a massive privatization of Flushing Meadows Corona Park by several large, well-flushing meadows corona parkfunded corporate interests. The opponents talked about three other proposals which were not a part of the USTA plan. These other proposals to develop private interests on public parkland include the development of a shopping mall by a private investment group in tandem with the owners of CitiField; 2) a condominium / hotel complex done by another group of private investors; and 3) a 13 acre soccer stadium by Major League Soccer, which is also a privately held corporation.

Community Board Tally & Boro Prez Candidates Positions

In the end Community Board 3 voted against the expansion plan, citing among other things, promises not kept when the USTA asked to expand its footpint in 1993. All six Community Boards have now voted on the USTA Expansion proposal, with three voting for it and three voting against it. We'll post a far more complete report on this Community Board Meeting at a later date.

While I was attending the Community Board 3 Meeting in Corona, all six Queens Borough Presidential candidates were attending a forum about the issues facing Queens at the Greater Astoria Historical Society in Astoria. The issue of turning over public parkland to private interests came up during the forum. To date only City Councilmember Tony Avella has come out against giving up public parkland to private interests. NY Senator Jose Peralta is the only other candidate to take a stance on the issue, but only on one of the proposed developments, namely the erection of the MLS Soccer Stadium on 13 acres of FMC Parkland [which he conditionally supports if MLS fulfills all of their promises]. All four other candidates have taken a wait-and-see stance on the issue.

Click here to read our past reports related to the proposed development plans for Flushing Meadows Corona Park. The first report provides an early history of Flushing Meadows Corona Park I and the second report provided an intermediate history of Flushing Meadows Corona Park II which included a number of relevant historic lessons related to sports complex developments in FMCP as well as NYC.


City Withdraws Plans To Use Eminent Domain

nyc withdraws use of eminent domain for willets point flushing queensMay 11, 2012 / Flushing / Queens Buzz. The Bloomberg Administration withdrew its threat to use eminent domain to condem the properties of the remaining Willets Point property-owners who did not want to sell their land. This statement was issued just prior to the beginning of court proceedings by the remaining holdouts, contesting the city's use of eminent domain.

The city had planned to remove the final holdouts and clear the way for a large new development that would include residential, commercial and office space, and parking. The city now owns 90% of the land in Willets Point, having bought out most of the prior owners.

Click here for a prior report about the Willets Point development in Flushing.


Roosevelt Island - Applied Sciences Development | real estate in lic queens long island city dutch kills real estate hotels queens lic long island city dutch kills
Roosevelt Island - Applied Sciences Development

Roosevelt Island To Become Techno Queens

Borough of the Arts, will one day become The Borough of Applied Sciences

March 7, 2012 / Long Island City / Queens Real Estate / Queens Buzz. I just returned from a breakfast where the NYC Deputy Mayor of Economic Development presented the NYC plan to develop an eleven acre campus on the southern end of Roosevelt Island, into an applied sciences academic institution.

Development of the new facility will take place over the course of the next thirty years, but the first classroom will open [somewhere in a leased facility] in the fall of 2012. When the applied sciences campus is done, the facility is expected to include about 2 million square feet of new construction and a half million feet of open space. Over the course of the next few decades, the institution is expected to become the academic home to 280 faculty members, a student body of 2,500, and to provide ongoing employment for about 8,000 people.

Click here to read the rest of our report on the presentation given by Robert K. Steel at the LIC Partnership breakfast about the new applied sciences development on Roosevelt Island.





Government & Employment In Queensgovernment & employment in queens


NYC Municipal Election 2013 | nyc municipal elections 2013 queens borough president debates qptv
NYC Municipal Election 2013

NYC Municipal Elections 2013

NYC Mayor, Queens Borough President & Six Ballot Proposals

November 5, 2013 / Flushing Neighborhood / Queens Government / Queens Buzz. On Tuesday voters get to decide who will run the city for the next four years. You get to weigh in on who will be the next NYC Mayor, Queens Borough President, City Comptroller, Public Advocate and City Councilmembers.

There are also six NY State Ballot proposals some of which are changes to the Constitution: 1) whether to authorize casino gambling in NYS, 2) a credit for qualified veterans with disabilities in the civil service, 3) exclusion of sewage treatment facility investments from county and municipal constitutional debt limits, 4) proposal to have NYS give up land rights in the Adirondacks to private enterprise in an exchange deal, 5) proposal to allow a private company to conduct mining operations on forest preserve land in a trade deal and 6) extending the length of time judges may serve past the age of 70.

Click here for our coverage of the NYC Municipal Elecitons, including details of the controversial Queens Borough President debate between Melinda Katz and Tony Arcabascio at QPTV in Flushing in October.  Story & photos by Michael Wood.



Queens Primary Election Results

Katz Wins Boro Prez / de Blasio May Doesn't Face Runoff

queens boro prez primary resultsUpdate / September 17, 2013 / Queens Buzz. Thompson ceded to de Blasio and there won't be any runoff. So de Blasio goes onto face Lhota in the November General Election.

September 11, 2013 / Queens Neighborhoods / Queens Politics / Queens Buzz. Melinda Katz received nearly 45% of the vote in the race for Queens Borough President. Peter Vallone was the runner up with nearly 34%. Everly Brown captured nearly 13% and Tony Avella whose name was on the ballot, but had dropped out of the race, won 9% of the vote. Katz will go onto face Republican Tony Arcabascio in November.

In the photo to your right, Republican candidate Tony Arcabascio speaks as Peter Vallone, Melinda Katz and Everly Brown listen at the Queens Borough President Forum held at Flushing Town Hall on August 26th.

Bill de Blasio was the winner of the Mayoral primary, but it remains unclear whether he won over 40% of the vote which would preclude any runoff against Thompson who was the runner up with 26% of the vote. Some paper ballots remain to be counted which could sway the tally. Christine Quinn, once the front runner, won only 16% of the vote and Queens' John Liu came in fourth place with 7% and Anthony Weiner netted 5%. On the Republican side Joe Lhota won 53% of the vote, beating out billionaire John Catsimatidis who netted 43%.

As for Queens City Council races, many incumbent candidates went uncontested in the primaries. Paul Vallone appears to have won with 31% of the vote in the 19th District but there could be a runoff. Costa Constatinides handily won the 22nd District [currently Peter Vallone's District] with 56% of the vote. Rory Lancman won the 24th District with 62% of the vote. Ruben Willis won the 28th District with 49% of the vote. Donovan Richards won the 31st District with 52% of the vote. Lew Simon won the 32nd District with 65% of the vote. And Antonio Reynoso won the 34th District with 49% of the vote beating out Vito Lopez. And Daneek Miller is ahead with 24% of the vote in the 27th District.

The general election will be held on Tuesday, November 5th.


Queens Borough President Election 2013 | queens boro prez primary 2013 vallone katz sept 2013 - feb 28, 2014 - 886 / mar 28, 2014 985 - added cash out & BB foot
Queens Borough President Election 2013

Queens Borough President Election

Democratic Party Hierarchy & NYC Developers Back Katz & Quinn

September 9, 2013 / Queens Politics / Queens News Analysis & Issues / Opinion / Queens Buzz. So after answering countless annoying and largely uninformative robocalls from those seeking to govern us [what happened to our ability to 'Opt Out' for telemarketing?], and receiving voluminous junk mailers, tomorrow we get to decide who's going to govern us.

Tomorrow matters, because about 80% of the elections in NYC are decided in the primaries.

In the photo above right, Peter Vallone takes Melinda Katz to task for sending out mailers that attempt to demonize him with distorted visuals and labels.

NYC Mayoral Candidates - Final Polls & Agendas & You Decide

There are five major candidates running for Mayor on the Democratic side [de Blasio, Quinn, Weiner, Thompson & Liu] and two on the Republican side [Lhota & Catsimatidis]. The most recent polls show DeBlasio well ahead of the pack, but he needs 40% of the vote to avoid having a runoff election later in the month. Thompson is the runner up and Quinn, once the leading candidate, is running a distant third.

mike bloomberg abuses quinnQuinn, sometimes referred to as Mayor Bloomberg's lapdog because of her 'dogged' support of his agenda, failed to obtain his endorsement, even after helping Bloomberg reverse a plebiscite on municipal office term limits [she's got to be feeling pretty used]. But both Quinn and Katz did win the endorsement of the Democratic Party hierachy and the monied support of NYC real estate developers.

Runoffs Weaken Mayoral Candidates

The last time we had an open NYC Mayoral election [meaning no incumbents] it resulted in a Democratic primary runoff. Fernando Ferrer won the primary with 279,000 votes [35.5%]. Mark Green won enough votes [243,000 votes] to compete in a runoff. In the runoff Mark Green prevailed, and then went on to lose against Michael Bloomberg by 35,000 votes. A hotly contested Democratic primary runoff weakens the Democratic candidate shortly before the final election.

Queens Borough President Candidates 2013

There are three Democrats running for Queens Borough President [Vallone, Katz & Brown] and one on the Republican side [Arcabascio]. Tony Avella is on the ballot, but he has dropped out of the race.

There are also a number of City Councilmember races, which we don't have the time to discuss today.

Click For More About Queens Borough President Candidates 2013

Click here to read more about the NYC Primary Elections, with more about the backgrounds of the Queens Borough President candidates, and including a link to find your Queens polling place.



State of the Borough Address 2013

helen marshall photo state of the borough address 2013January 23, 2013 / Queens Neighborhoods / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. Helen Marshall gave her last State of the Borough Address on Tuesday morning at the Colden Auditorium on the Queens College campus.

As she's done the past few years we've been covering this event, she took us through each category of borough administration, recounting the efforts of her administration since she became Borough President in January of 2002.

Generally things in the borough look fairly good, given the givens [challenging economy & Sandy]. And based upon her presentation, it appears she's been a good steward of Queens borough affairs. Click here later this week to read our full report on Helen Marshall's State of the Borough Address 2013 for Queens.


Queens Employment - Jobs Sectors & Employment In Queens | jobs in queens employment categories and sectors in queens astoria employment lic sunnyside woodside jackson heights employment flushing jamaica ny bayside whitestone employment unemployment
Queens Employment - Jobs Sectors & Employment In Queens

Queens County Employment Bests NYC

Queens is one of NYC’s Top Employment Performers

December 19, 2012 / Queens Neighborhoods / Employment in Queens / Queens Buzz.   Tis the season to be jolly and reflect on what’s happened economically over the past year while contemplating and planning for what lies ahead.  To that end we did a bit of research into Queens current economic trends, specifically in the employment area.

Queens Employment & Economy is Diversified

Queens has a relatively diversified employment base.  Queens County industries include: 1) transportation facilities such as JFK and LaGuardia Airports, Long Island Railroad stations, a network of MTA subways and buses, and a network of federal, state and local roadways,
2) energy infrastructure including two major power plants along the East River,
3) a growing hospitality section including hotels, a large casino, two horse race tracks, a major league baseball team, thousands of small to large retailers,
4) an array of about 2,200 restaurants,
5) a full service construction industry,
6) some light manufacturing and
7) government / social services / education as Queens is home to about a dozen hospitals [both private & public] and over three hundred public schools.

Click here to read our report on employment, unemployment & industry in Queens





Home Improvement & Construction In Queenshome improvement & construction in queens


Queens Chamber Building Awards 2013

Chamber of Commerce Recognizes Queens Builders

queens chamber of commerce building awards 2013January 23, 2013 / Jackson Heights / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. On Thursday January 17th, the Queens Chamber of Commerce presented awards in twenty separate categories honoring builders in the borough of Queens. The Queens Chamber Building Awards Reception began in 2007.

The awards were broken into three major categories: 1) Rehabs, 2) Interiors and 3) New Construction. And, except for Interiors, each of these categories included a number of subcategories. In the photo to your right you can see QC Building Awards attendees looking over some of the awards given at the event.

The Queens Chamber Building Awards Reception was held at the Marriott LaGuardia in East Elmhurst, just north of Jackson Heights.

Queens Builders & Contractors - Queens Bronx Builders Assn Trade Show | queens builders & contractors queens bronx builders association queens bronx builders assn trade show in east elmhurst queens ny
Queens Builders & Contractors - Queens Bronx Builders Assn Trade Show

Queens Bronx Builders Association

Building Businesses Slowly Improving - Builders Cautiously Optimistic

October 25, 2012 / Jackson Heights / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. I attended the Queens Bronx Builders Association Trade Show at the LaGuardia Marriott this evening. The show included between two and three dozen exhibitors showing just about everything and anything you might need to build a building. I went to get some sense of the mood of the building trades, given the economy has been the focus of many folks’ attention since the financial debacle of 2008.

The sense I got from most was that, while things are not great like they had been before the bust, they had ‘hit bottom’, and things appeared to be steadily improving. Most of the folks I spoke to were cautiously optimistic, saying they had some really good days but they also had some really slow days. A few of the people I spoke to were downright bullish. Only two people told me that things were still very rough out there.

As you know, this is not a scientific survey, but the joking around left me with the sense that what I had been told was somewhere in the reality ballpark.

Click here to read a report about the Queens Bronx Building Association Trade Show in Queens.

 



Manufacturing In Queens - Windows & Doors | crystal windows & doors flushing queens windows doors in queens ny contractors in queens ny
Manufacturing In Queens - Windows & Doors

Crystal Window & Door Systems

An American Asian Tiger In Flushing

March 21, 2011 / Flushing Neighborhood / Queens Buzz. I had occasion to tour the plant of Crystal Windows, one of Queens most successful manufacturing operations. Crystal Windows is a manufacturer of windows and door systems used in homes, apartment buildings and business buildings.

Their plant is located in Flushing just off the Whitestone Expressway and it encompasses 225,000 square feet, covering the better part of a very large city block. The plant production facility begins with receiving at the south end of the plant and ends in shipping at the north end of the plant.

Click here to view our report on a successful manufacturer of windows and doors in Queens NY, including a photo slide show of the plant in operation.



Queens Business Meetings - Business Events & Seminars in Queens | Queens business meetings business events business seminars queens business events in lic business in astoria business meetings in flushing jackson heights corona jamaica ny long island city sunnyside woodside entrepreneur meetings technology meetings in queens ny
Queens Business Meetings - Business Events & Seminars in Queens

Queens Business Meetings

Queens NY / March 14, 2013. This section contains business meetings, business events, business seminars and Queens for the Astoria, Jackson Heights, Elmhurst, Long Island City, LIC, Sunnyside, Woodside, Jamaica, Forest Hills, Flushing, Corona neighborhoods in Queens NY for the month of March of 2013.

Click here to view the Queens Business Events Calendar for the month of March 2013.




Solar Panels & Energy Systems In Queens | solar energy in queens solar panels in astoria lic long island city flushing sunnyside woodside
Solar Panels & Energy Systems In Queens

Solar Panels & Energy In Queens

LICBDC Seminar - Solar Energy Tax Incentives 2011

March 20, 2011 / Long Island City / Queens Buzz. I just returned from a seminar detailing government incentives for installing solar on residential and commercial buildings in 2011. Based on what was presented in the seminar, anyone contemplating this sort of investment, might want to think about doing it in 2011.

The federal, state and city government are all offering tax incentives which add up to significant savings and shorten the payback period over which a building owner could recoup their investment in a solar energy system. Solar is a hedge against increases in oil prices, and demand for such systems is likely to grow. Given the tax incentives it’s possible, that as we approach the end of the year, companies selling solar energy systems might become quite busy. The photo to your left shows a roof top solar energy system.

Click here to read our report about the tax incentives for solar energy in Queens NY in 2011.





Finance - Banks & Loans In Queensbanks & loans in queens


Chhaya Hits A Home Run

4th Annual Home Buyer Fair in Jackson Heights

chhaya home buyers fairJanuary 28, 2013 / Jackson Heights / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. The more I get to know about Queens, and the more familiar I become with the many immigrant communities to which Queens is called home, the more impressed I become with the intelligence of the American system and the immigrants who fuel the American dream.

One of the American dreams is to own your own home. To that effect Chhaya [pronounced chi - ya], a non-profit organization in Jackson Heights, helped facilitate that effort at its fourth annual Home Buyer Fair on Saturday. Attendance of the Home Buyer Fair was at an all time high of several hundred, up from about 30 attendees at the first one, just four years ago.

The Home Buyer Fair featured a number of brand name lenders in the morning, and a whole host of non-profit / community minded organizations in the afternoon. The fair was open to everyone [we posted it in our Queens Events calendar in the business section], and provided attendees with a whole host of avenues for purchasing a home. Click here later today to read the rest of our report about the Chhaya Home Buyer Fair.


Economic Forecast For Queens 2012 - Queens Economy | federal reserve economists in queens lic long island city economic forecast for queens 2012
Economic Forecast For Queens 2012 - Queens Economy

Economic Outlook 2012 - Queens Economy

Federal Reserve Economist Discusses 2012 Outlook At LIC Partnership Breakfast

February 13, 2012 / Long Island City / Queens Business / Queens Buzz. I attended a lecture given by New York Federal Reserve Economist Rae Rosen at the LIC Partnership breakfast in Long Island City. In the lecture the economist talked about many of the critical factors that would play a role in the outcome of how the economy would perform in 2012. How these factors play out will ultimately impact the kind of economic year Queens, NYC and NYS will have in 2012.

 

U.S. Economic Performance in 2012 Vs Averages

The U.S. economy grew 2.8% in the fourth quarter, ending the 2011 year on a strong note, after a slow beginning. For 2012 the consensus forecast is between 2.5% to 3%, with the highs above 3% and the lows just above 1% which still implies a growth year. The U.S. average growth rate since the end of WWII has been about 3.28%. According to one report I read, the probability the U.S. will slip back into recession has fallen to 23%.

Click here for our report of the lecture given by Federal Economist Rae Rosen at the LIC Partnership breakfast in February 2012 - Queens Economic Forecast 2012.



 



Manufacturers & Wholesalers In Queensmanufacturers & wholesalers in queens


Offer Made For Steinway & Sons Piano | steinway musical instruments company for sale buyout of steinway musical instruments company in queens astoria steinway musical instruments steinway piano company sale
Offer Made For Steinway & Sons Piano

Offer Made For Steinway & Sons Piano

Kohlberg & Co Bids For Steinway Musical Instruments

July 23, 2013 / Astoria Neighborhood / Queens Business / News & Opinion / Queens Buzz. Kohlberg & Company offerred $438 million for the Steinway Musical Instruments Company, owner of Steinway & Sons Piano in Astoria. The 160 year old company, Steinway & Sons Piano, was founded in Manhattan in 1853.

Kohlberg & Co Offer

The Steinway & Piano Company has changed hands a couple of times over the past 160 years, once being acquired by CBS Television, and later being acquired by Selmer Musical Instruments.

Click here to read more about the Kohlberg & Company Offer to buy Steinway Musical Instruments in Queens.



Cassinelli Food Products - Fresh Pasta Queens | fresh italian pasta queens ny fresh italian pasta ravioli tortellini fettuccine manicotti astoria ny italian pasta factory queens ny astoria
Cassinelli Food Products - Fresh Pasta Queens

Fresh Pasta Made Daily In Queens NY

Cassinelli Food Products Company

Astoria & Queens used to be heavily populated with Italian immigrants, particularly in the first half of the 20th century. They brought with them their knowledge and skills about food and wine, the products of which became, in time, a part of the American culture.

This is a report about the Cassinelli Food Products company. It's one of the last old world Italian pasta making companies in Queens. The Cassinelli pasta company makes fresh pasta in the Astoria neighborhood of Queens daily.

Click here to read the full report about fresh pasta in Astoria Queens NY.



Titan - Greek Food In Astoria Queens | titan foods greek olives greek cheeses greek food wholesalers astoria queens long island
Titan - Greek Food In Astoria Queens

A Titan In Our Midst

Titan & Optima Foods - Greek Food In Astoria Queens

Astoria / Queens Buzz. Astoria has long been known as the Greek section of Queens and NYC. And for nearly 30 years Titan Foods has been serving the Greek section of Queens and NYC with imported Greek food. In 1991 Optima Foods, which is owned by the same folks as Titan, began operating as a mid sized importer and since that time has grown to become one of the leading distributors of Greek food along the eastern seaboard of the United States.

Click this link to read the full story about Titan Foods - Greek food stores in Astoria Queens.





Transportation In Queenstransportation in queens


MTA Rush Hour Power Outage

#7 Subway Line Down For Hours

#7 subway line public transit in queensDecember 10, 2013 / Queens Neighborhoods / Queens Buzz. What's wrong with this picture? There aren't any subways running on these tracks during rush hour on Tuesday evening.

The #7 subway is the busiest single subway in NYC and it's the second busiest subway line, after the 4, 5, 6 line that runs north and south along the east side of Manhattan.

According to an attendant there was a power outage along the entire line beginning around 5 pm Tuesday, which was partially repaired within several hours. The trains were running limited service by about 9 pm Tuesday due to ongoing signal problems at a few stations. As of Wednesday at 10 am the MTA continues to report signal problems on the #7 line, so for the time being expect delays.

Ironically this outage comes only weeks after the MTA spent two months of weekends [October / November] doing upgrades / maintenance work on the #7 subway line. It's also worth mentioning that the #7 subway line was one of the last of the major lines to go back into operation following Hurricane Sandy in 2012. The reason for the delay in resumption of service in 2012 was that they couldn't turn on the power because of flooding in the tunnels.

I wonder if any of these issues / activities are related, and what the MTA is doing to address them?

Ridership on the #7 subway line is expected to continue growing because of the significant amount of real estate development going on in the Long Island City and Flushing neighborhoods of Queens. Lagging infrastructure development could hamper growth. Queens Borough President-elect Melinda Katz stated that this would be one of her top priorities upon assuming the office. It seems this might be a good place to start.


Pedestrian Malls In Queens - Newtown Plaza Astoria | newtown avenue plaza pedestrian malls in astoria pedestrian malls in queens newtown avenue pedestrian mall
Pedestrian Malls In Queens - Newtown Plaza Astoria

Pedestrian Malls In Queens

Meeting On Astoria Pedestrian Mall Tuesday

September 10, 2012 / Astoria / Queens Community Issues / Queens Buzz. On Tuesday evening September 11, there’s a Community Board 1 meeting at the Astoria World Manor on 25-22 Astoria Blvd. One of the topics on the agenda is which DOT [Department of Transportation] proposal to approve, regarding changing the traffic configuration in and around the intersection of Newtown Avenue and 30th Avenue in Astoria.

According to the Queens DOT, this intersection is the site of numerous accidents, and is more dangerous than approximately 90% of all intersections in Queens. It’s not difficult to understand why, as it is the nexus point for five roads: east & west on 30th Avenue, north & south on 33rd Street and northwest on Newtown Avenue [see map on next page]. The photo to your left was taken on August 25th when Newtown Avenue was temporarily converted into a pedestrian plaza.

Click here to read our report on the Newtown Plaza, in which we include related reports on other pedestrian malls in Queens, NYC and NYS.



Jet Blue LIC - Airlines In Queens NY | jet blue lic jet blue airlines in long island city queens ny airlines in queens ny jet blue lic queens
Jet Blue LIC - Airlines In Queens NY

Jet Blue Operations in Queens

Behind The Scenes At Jet Blue LIC

May 19, 2012 / Long Island City / Queens Business / Queens Buzz.  I decided to take a look behind the airline ticket counter to see what goes on behind the scenes of a scrappy competitive airline upstart.  That description best describes the Queens hometown airline - Jet Blue - which recently relocated within the borough, moving from Forest Hills [and Darien, CT] to the Met Life Building off Queens Plaza in Long Island City. 

Jet Blue officially opened its Long Island City location on April 3rd, 2012.  They had been moving folks into the building in waves, after about a year of preparations.  The first wave came on March 9th, and the last wave came on April 4th, 2012.  There are currently about 1,000 Jet Blue employees working out of the Long Island City facility.

In this report I focused on their operations center which handles many of the behind-the-scenes logistics.  This report will give you a close up look at what goes on behind the scenes every day at Jet Blue as it prepares, schedules, executes and monitors an airline that has a fleet of between 150  - 200 planes, about 2,000 pilots, about 3,000 flight attendants, and an LIC operations crew of about 250 that runs 24/7 every day of the year. The Jet Blue Operations Center is shown looking through an aquarium, in the photo above.

Click here to read our report about Jet Blue in Long Island City LIC Queens.




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