In a sign that the state is looking to help spur Jamaica’s revitalization, 132 acres near the LIRR and JFK AirTrain transit hub have been designated as a Brownfield Opportunity Area, meaning development projects there could receive public funds.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the designation Thursday along with 11 others at sites around the state.
The Brownfield Opportunity Area Program is a state initiative that seeks to transform potentially contaminated or polluted places to better utilized areas. The downtown Jamaica area has 224 potential brownfield sites near the rail station.
Being located in the newly designated area now gives property owners and developers access to Brownfield Cleanup Program tax incentives and they have priority to state grants for projects.
“By designating these sites as Brownfield Opportunity Areas, we are helping to reimagine their potential as vibrant parts of the surrounding communities,” Cuomo said. “This distinction allows us to put their rehabilitation on the fast track with additional state resources, and that means new development, jobs and opportunities in the future.”
Downtown Jamaica, especially near the transit hub area, has seen a lot of real estate development action recently as the market is heating up.
Huge projects, including a 210-room, 24-story hotel nearby the LIRR and AirTrain station at 93-43 Sutphin Blvd. and a $225 million mixed-use, 29-story residential and commercial tower at 93-01 Sutphin Blvd., are coming to the area soon.
Also, massive properties were sold or listed in downtown Jamaica recently, including a 90,000-square-foot building and parking garage at 163-05 and 163-25 Archer Ave. that sold for $22 million in October last year.