Hallets Point project to bring new life to Astoria waterfront


| aaltman@queenscourier.com |

Photo courtesy of Lincoln Equities Group
Photo courtesy of Lincoln Equities Group

Renderings of the possible construction at Hallets Point show the landscaped waterfront park. The project is slated to begin as early as 2013.

A deserted, seven-acre stretch of formerly industrial Astoria waterfront could soon have new life, as a New Jersey development group announced plans to build seven multifamily residential towers as soon as 2013.

Lincoln Equities Group, the company behind the estimated billion-dollar complex called the Hallets Point project, said the buildings will have 2,200 units as well as retail space, including supermarkets, drugstores and restaurants. The company says the properties will boast panoramic views of the Manhattan skyline and the East River, as well as accommodations for a water taxi stop nearby. A 100,000-square-foot public park, outfitted with pedestrian walkways and bike paths, winding along the waterfront, is also expected to be included.

“That area has long been underdeveloped,” said Lincoln Equities Group spokesperson Andrew Moesel. “We believe that a substantial residential commercial development will not only bring in new residents, but much needed resources and amenities that will be transformative for that neighborhood.”

According to Moesel, the project was first proposed in 2006 but has gone through many changes to accommodate the concerns of the community.

“We were ultimately shaping a development that would be conducive to the neighborhood and the demands of the marketplace,” he said.

Eighty percent of the units will be available at market rate with the remaining 20 percent set aside for affordable housing, as per the federal statute. While Moesel said they expect to break ground in 2013, the project could take another three to five years to be completed.

Senator Michael Gianaris is positive about the potential construction, granted the developers stick to their promises. While Gianaris added he plans to keep a watchful eye on the project, it could potentially improve the lives of hundreds of Astoria residents.

“That part of the neighborhood is on a cove, removed from the rest of the area,” said Gianaris. “They have to board a bus just to shop for groceries or take public transit just to cash a check. A lot of the conveniences of everyday New York life are not available in that area.”