Long Island City organization seeks local business input on benefits and drawbacks of neighborhood

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Long Island City Partnership, a neighborhood development organization, is conducting a survey to collect information on the area’s business environment and gather data to help inform future policy decisions.

The group is asking businesses located within the ZIP codes 11101, 11102, 11103, 11104, 11105, 11106,  11109 and 11120 to take a 20-question survey by Jan. 31, 2018.

According to Elizabeth Lusskin, president of the Partnership, business owners will answer questions ranging from how much space they occupy, the education level of their workforce, what they need from the neighborhood to improve their business and if they plan to expand their business in terms of square footage or hiring.

The goal of the survey is “to get a really good picture of what the businesses are that are here, what their plans are for the future, what’s working for them, what needs to work better for them in Long Island City and how it fits together,” Lusskin said.

Long Island City Partnership conducted the first survey during the 2015-2016 year and as a result, released the Comprehensive Plan for Long Island City in November 2016. The plan outlined nine recommendations to ensure that the neighborhood retains its mixed-use characteristics.

Lusskin said the survey helped the organization discover key initiatives that would help business owners stay in the area. For example, the data led them to conclude that cultural institutions, artists and nonprofits struggle to afford rent and require incentives to help them stay in the neighborhood.

Creating stronger links between business owners and potential employees through workforce training programs in schools and colleges, working with transportation agencies to improve subway and bus frequency and creating more commercial and industrial space were also in the list of recommendations.

Lusskin called the plan “foundational” not just for her organization but for state and city policy makers, academics, business owners and developers.

The new survey will help keep the data “fresh” and also help the Long Island City Partnership determine if new recommendations need to be added to the plan, Lusskin said. She also added that it’s a good opportunity for business owners to weigh in on how to improve and enhance the neighborhood.

“Long Island City is an amazing place,” she said. “It’s the most productive neighborhood in the entire state but not everybody knows all the great things that go on here because so much of it happens behind brick walls.”

 To take the survey, visit www.licqns.com/survey2017