By Alex Davidson
Joseph Ciampa Jr., chairman of Ciampa Inc., which is developing the seven-acre site, showed Marshall the new units. The borough president was joined by Community Board 9 District Manager Mary Ann Carey and Greater Woodhaven Development Corporation Executive Director Maria Thomson.
“Queens is a home community and this is keeping up with that tradition,” Marshall said of the development at 93-04 89th Ave. “This helps build up the population in Queens.”
The model of the 68 units, priced at around $600,000, will be on view Saturdays and Sundays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. The homes will be divided categorically as either perimeter or interior homes, Ciampa said, with garages for those on the outside and driveways only for homes inside.
Formally called the Woodhaven Park Estates, the homes sit atop the former St. Anthony's Hospital site that opened in 1914 and was demolished in 2001. It had been operated by the Franciscan Sisters of the Poor and until August was owned by the Diocese of Brooklyn.
The city is slated to build an early childhood center adjacent to the new Woodhaven homes, a plan championed by Marshall. The borough president, citing an ongoing development in the Rockaways, said a new trend in Queens housing construction is to build schools near new homes so as not to worsen the borough's overcrowding problem.
Carey, who had been part of the board's negotiations with the diocese about what would replace the hospital, said the new childhood center will fit well with the new homes. The center will sit amid a roughly 38,000-square-foot rectangular portion of the block bounded by 89th Avenue to the north, 91st Avenue to the south, Woodhaven Boulevard to the west and 96th Street to the east.
“As it turns out, we are lucky because we are getting both a school and some open space,” she said.
Ciampa, whose firm is based in Queens, came to the unveiling with his brothers who together own the family business. He said he was glad to see the model home open as a preview to the other units.
“I'm very happy that this is getting underway,” Ciampa said. “We are going to continue to put our best foot forward.”
Thomson, who helps oversee Woodhaven's Business Improvement District, said the new families buying the homes will keep more people in the borough rather than moving to places like Long Island. She said the new homes will create a tighter-knit community, which could allow young couples to remain near their older family members who live in Queens.
“I'm just so pleased with this. I think it is wonderful,” Thomson said. “I think this will be uplifting to the whole community.
Reach reporter Alex Davidson by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 718-229-0300, Ext. 156.