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Affordable housing develops in Hunter Point

Queens will soon have an all-new view of affordable housing.
The development plan for Hunters Point South – complete with its view of the Manhattan skyline – was unveiled by Mayor Michael Bloomberg at the Waterfront Crab House in Long Island City on Wednesday, February. The development will be the largest new affordable housing complex built in the city since the 1970s.
“At Hunters Point South, not only will we build the largest new affordable housing complex in more than three decades, we’ll do it on long-vacant waterfront property that has incredible views and sits adjacent to one of New York City’s fastest growing neighborhoods,” said Bloomberg, adding that this is the largest infusion of affordable housing in all five boroughs.
“All told, the project will provide new homes for 5,000 New York City families – more than 900 in this first phase – while creating thousands of jobs,” said the mayor.
The first phase of the project includes two mixed-use buildings comprising 908 housing units and roughly 20,000-square-feet of retail space. According to the mayor, at least 75 percent of the housing will be permanently targeted at low-, moderate- and middle-income families.
The permanently affordable units will be targeted to families with household incomes ranging from $32,000 to $130,000 per year for a family of four. To be completed in 2014, the first phase will also include five acres of new waterfront parkland, a new 1,100-seat intermediate and high school and parking.
Infrastructure work, including installation of sewers, water mains, roadways, sidewalks and parking, will begin next month and is expected to be completed during the spring of 2013. The two residential buildings will begin construction in 2012 and are expected to take up to 24 months to complete. The new school will open in the fall of 2013.
Hunters Point South will be the largest affordable housing development in the city since Co-op City and Starrett City were completed in the 1970s. The site will cover more than 11 acres of land and developers anticipate that it will catalyze about $2 billion in private investment and create around 4,600 jobs.
With sidewalks and multiple street level entries, the building should create an active, new neighborhood within LIC. These changes are a welcomed upgrade for Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer, who said the site sat vacant for far too long.
“From affordable housing, to retail space, a new school and even a waterfront park this state of the art development can serve as a model in urban planning and design,” said Councilmember Van Bramer. “Hunters Point and greater Long Island City is an amazingly vibrant and diverse place to live, work and create.”
Van Bramer wasn’t the only local elected official who was relieved to see the land finally being used – the fact that it is being used for affordable housing makes it that much more extraordinary. Congressmember Carolyn Maloney said this addition to Long Island City will serve to heighten the neighborhood’s profile and revitalize the waterfront.
“Thousands of affordable apartments, acres of parkland and a new school here in Hunters Point will all be wonderful additions to the neighborhood and to our city,” she said. “I thank Mayor Bloomberg and his team for their work to develop and revitalize the waterfront in western Queens.”
A development team consisting of Phipps Houses, Related Companies and Monadnock Construction were selected through competitive bid process and will begin construction “immediately,” according to the mayor.
“We’re looking forward to rolling up our sleeves to work with our partners, Related Companies and Phipps Houses, to build affordable housing for hard-working New Yorkers,” said Monadnock Construction president Nick Lembo.

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