Queens gets $2.6M in grants

The Queens community got a huge boost recently when the Empire State Development Corporation accepted the proposal of downstate grants totaling $17.6 million.
Among the grants received, $15 million out of the $17.6 will go to help modernize the Roosevelt Island tram. The tram will contribute to the economic impact of Roosevelt Island by ensuring a reliable form of transportation for residents to travel back and forth to the city.
Queens County received a good portion of the remaining $2.6 million in grants.
The group that received the largest portion was the Jamaica Hotel. The $1,202,142 reform grant will transform Jamaica into a vibrant 24-hour mixed-use community centered around one of the region’s major transportation hubs.
This project will be managed by the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation (GJDC) and proposes to demolish and renovate 10 sites, which will be combined to form a 41,000-square-foot site for the new Jamaica Hotel. When completed, the new facility will be comprised of two towers — a 250 to 450 room hotel and 200-375 units of market and affordable housing on top of a two-story retail base and 260 underground parking spaces.
St. Saviour’s Church, which is located in Maspeth, received $100,000 in grants to preserve, maintain and restore historic structures within the grounds of All Faiths Cemetery. They also will use the money for the renovation costs of the church’s interior and exterior infrastructure.
The Queens County Farm in Floral Park was given a grant of $170,000. This museum, which is the longest continuously-farmed site in New York State, is to use this money to improve the Adriance Farmhouse and Greenhouse as well as for the cost of the replacement of the southwest fence and entrance gate of the museum.
Eastern Queens also benefited from these grants as well.
Services Now for Adult Persons (SNAP) was awarded $165,000 in grant money. SNAP, which is a social service agency dedicated to the needs of older adults, was given this grant to be used for a portion of the cost of planning and designing for the new 15,000-square-foot facility. The new space will accommodate an increased elderly population that depends on SNAP for services such as case management, transportation, home delivered meals, money management, and the volunteer-friendly visiting program.
The last and least amount went to the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce. This non-profit organization received $65,000 in grants to be used for soft costs associated with the development of the Jamaica Export Center.
Empire State Development is New York’s chief economic development agency, encompassing business, workforce and community improvements. The board of directors plans to hold another meeting on August 18 to discuss how the grants were used and what will happen in the future.

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