Tag Archives: Long Island City

Man struck with brick during attempted robbery at Court Square ATM: cops


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYPD

An attacker used a brick stuffed into a pink stocking to hit a man in the head after he refused to hand over his cash at a Long Island City ATM, police said.

The 32-year-old victim was withdrawing money inside the vestibule area of the 1 Court Square Citibank about 4:15 a.m. on Monday when the suspect approached him, authorities said.

The suspect, while holding the stocking with the brick inside of it, then demanded money from the man.

When the victim would not hand over his cash, the suspect swung the brick at the man and struck him in the head, according to police. He fled without taking any money.

The victim refused medical attention.

Police describe the suspect as about 5 feet 8 inches tall and 230 pounds. He was last seen wearing a black hat and black jacket.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or can text their tips to CRIMES (274637), then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

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New mixed-use LIC building at Vernon Boulevard partially revealed


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre

Construction work has already begun for a new mixed-use building at the corner of 50th Avenue and Vernon Boulevard in Long Island City, but now there’s a slightly clearer picture of what the structure will look like.

IMG953832

Blueprints of the forthcoming building at 49-18 Vernon Blvd. have been posted on the construction fence.

Based on its blueprints, the OAPD Architecture-designed building’s façade will be comprised of a glass and stone design, and there will be ground-floor retail at the property.

The new building will be a five-story, 15-unit residential structure, according to filings with the Department of Buildings. About 4,450 square feet has been set aside for the retail component in the building.

Photo courtesy of Scott Bintner/PropertyShark

49-18 Vernon Blvd. Photo courtesy of Scott Bintner/PropertyShark

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Large day care center coming to Arris Lofts in LIC


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre 

In the latest sign that Long Island City is becoming more and more family friendly, a new day care center will be moving into luxury condo building Arris Lofts, according to multiple sources.

The new day care center will fill 17,000 square feet of vacant space in the ground floor of the building at 27-28 Thomson Ave., which has about 237 residential units throughout eight floors. Sources confirmed the day care center signing, but couldn’t provide further details at this time about the lease or when the business plans to open.

The Long Island City area has seen an influx of residential development over the past few years, which has brought many families into the area, causing a need for facilities, such as day care centers, according to real estate experts in the neighborhood.

Within the past five years, there have been more than 4,000 residential units added to the area, said real estate firm Modern Spaces CEO Eric Benaim, and there are plans for about 10,000 more in the next five years.

“I think a day care center is much needed in that part of town,” Benaim said. “There are day care centers on the waterfront, but having one to serve the Court Square area is really good.”

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LIC Clock Tower and vacant site sell for $77M


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Scott Bintner/PropertyShark

Those looking to preserve the Long Island City Clock Tower may be running out of time.

Queens Plaza Park Development LLC bought the tower, which was the former Bank of Manhattan building, and an adjoining vacant site for a combined $77 million, according to property records filed with the city on Saturday.

Community members are hoping to landmark the building on 29-27 Queens Plaza North to avoid its development, according to recently published reports, after LIC Clock Tower LLC bought the tower in May for $15 million, city records show.

In just a few months, the price of the tower doubled and sold for $30.9 million. The buyer also purchased the vacant land at 29-37 41st Ave. for $46.3 million.

The vacant site has more than 205,000 buildable square feet. Queens-based developer Steve Cheung purchased the vacant site for $8 million in 2011, city records show, and last year he filed with the Department of Buildings for a 30-story residential tower with 242 units at the vacant site.

Plans for the Clock Tower site have yet to be filed with the Buildings Department.

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Construction progressing on boxy mixed-use building on Jackson Avenue


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre, renderings courtesy of ODA

Not long ago, foundation work was completed for a 11-story mixed-use residential and retail building in Long Island City.

Now construction work is moving on the ODA-designed project, and the lower levels of the 22-22 Jackson Ave. building are starting to take shape.

A construction poster at the site says the building is due to be completed by the summer of 2015.

The building, which is directly across from the crumbling 5Pointz site and MoMA PS1, will have more than 5,500 square feet of retail space and 175 rental units, according to filings with the Buildings Department.

It will feature an exposed concrete façade, a two-story lobby with lounge and library spaces, a gym, an indoor pool and a roof deck, according to ODA’s website.


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108th Precinct names new commanding officer


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo via Twitter/@NYPD110Pct

The 108th Precinct has a new top dog.

Captain John F. Travaglia has been named the new commanding officer of the police precinct that covers Long Island City, Sunnyside, Woodside and Maspeth.

He is replacing Captain Brian Hennessy, who on Nov. 6 became the commanding officer to the 115th Precinct.

Travaglia began his career in the NYPD in 1993 at the 105th Precinct. Throughout the years, he has also served in the 113th and 104th precincts, and Patrol Borough Queens South, Patrol Borough Queens North, Highway District, Highway 3 and Queens South Narcotics Division.

On Wednesday, Travaglia tweeted from the 108th Precinct’s Twitter account saying, “As the new Commanding Officer of the #108pct, I look forward to working with the wonderful communities of #LIC #Sunnyside #Woodside #Maspeth.”

The next 108th Community Council Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 25, at 7 a.m. at Sunnyside Community Services, 43-31 39th St. in Sunnyside.

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Seven-story residential building The Marx coming to Astoria


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Fogarty Finger

An early rendering of a new seven-story residential building called The Marx, which is planned for Astoria, was revealed Thursday.

The new structure at 34-32 35th St. will replace two small houses and a parking lot, according to 6sqft.

The building will have 33 units throughout nearly 30,000 square feet, according to filings with the Buildings Department.

Fogarty Finger is designing the project, which will also have 18 parking spaces. In addition, the Manhattan-based architecture firm is working on an 11-story condominium building in Long Island City for Charney Construction & Development.

Also in Astoria, developer New York Lions Group is working on an eight-story, 77-unit condominium called The Baron, at 14-07 Broadway.

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Get a pie at the Flea


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

DSC_0561-624x416

With the holidays just around the corner, this weekend the LIC Flea & Food will be hosting sweet giveaways.

The popular Long Island City flea market made its move indoors to the warehouse, connected to the original outdoor lot on the corner of Fifth Street and 46th Avenue, to launch the LIC Flea Holiday Market.

This Saturday and Sunday, Long Island City’s Cassey’s Cookies & Cobblers will sponsor the LIC Flea Holiday Pie Giveaway. With every purchase, shoppers will receive an entry with the chance to win a holiday pie every hour.

The East River Ferry has also partnered with the LIC Flea this weekend to offer one shopper a monthlong pass for the ferry.

Visitors can enter both giveaways on the second floor of the holiday market.

Shoppers can also enter the LIC Flea Black Friday challenge by stopping at the market and getting all their holiday shopping done before Dec. 1 for a chance to win $100 in Flea Bucks. See www.facebook.com/licflea for how to enter.

Every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 21, the indoor holiday market will include two floors of a mix of LIC Flea favorite vendors and new faces offering local, handmade and uniquely curated items. Vendors will also be selling delicious treats and drinks. There are also two special boutique spots in the inner building. Shoppers will be able to find something for everyone on their lists.

The LIC Flea Beer Garden also remains open on the second floor of the warehouse. The beer garden offers wine and beer selections from local breweries SingleCut Beersmiths, Queens Brewery, Finback Brewery and Rockaway Brewing Company. Drink specials, including $2 beer and $3 wine, are available from 4 to 5 p.m.

There will be great events in the weekends to come such as Lego building, cupcake making, pictures with Santa Claus and much more. Dandy Wellington and His Band will be performing this weekend at the flea market.

The LIC Flea Holiday Market is open every Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information visit www.licflea.com or www.facebook.com/licflea.

Here are some vendors to check out the next time you visit the popular indoor Long Island City flea market.

1. Drunken Meadow
www.drunkenmeadow.com
Drunken Meadow is a small tea company based in Brooklyn. They believe the process of making tea is an art form, the results shared with family and friends. Their philosophy is straightforward tea, carefully selected from family farms around the world. After all, you deserve better tea!

2. Lux Candle Shop
Facebook.com/luxcandleshop
Lux Candle Shop is a collection of handmade candles inspired by popular designer fragrance scents. A one-woman show based in Queens, the shop uses a modern yet simple design for candles that could easily work with anyone’s home décor. Available in both paraffin and soy-based candles, the shop offers 4oz and tea light varieties. Custom orders are welcome.

3. Little Poland Gallery
littlepolandgallery.com
The Little Poland Gallery, located at 240 Kent Ave. Unit 20 in Brooklyn, is happy to present a distinct variety of toys, artwork, jewelry and Christmas ornaments. All items are handmade by Polish artists based in Poland, as well as domestically in the United States. They invite you to visit them at their location in Williamsburg or at the LIC Holiday Flea Market any weekend between Nov. 22 through Dec. 21.

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See it: Luxury LIC condos with near $3M price tags


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photos and renderings courtesy of Modern Spaces

Modern Spaces is marketing multiple condos in Long Island City near the $3 million mark. The high luxury listings reflect surging prices in the neighborhood, according to Eric Benaim, CEO and founder of the real estate firm.


“The luxury market is really starting to pick up as the prices in Manhattan are just skyrocketing,” Benaim said.

Modern Spaces is marketing a condo at Arris Loft on Thomson Avenue for $2.99 million. The unit boasts three bedrooms and three bathrooms throughout 2,339 square feet. It also features 16-foot ceilings and about 3,000-square-feet in private terraces.

The real estate firm is also handling the sale of a condo at The View on the Long Island City waterfront, which will go on the market soon for $2.89 million. The unit has three bedrooms and three bathrooms throughout 1,653 square feet.

Another one of its units is a duplex condominium at 5-41 47th Rd., which is asking $2.5 million.

The unit will have three bedrooms, a den that can be converted to a fourth bedroom, two-and-a-half bathrooms, and a 1,100-square-foot yard.

The 2,040-square-foot space is currently under construction and will be completed in about two weeks, according to Modern Spaces.


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Elmhurst woman writes Queens walking tour book


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Image courtesy of Adrienne Onofri

One Elmhurst woman is hoping her new book will help readers step out their doors and take a stroll while exploring all that Queens has to offer.

Adrienne Onofri is the author behind “Walking Queens,” a new book that features 30 detailed walking tours through the borough exploring architecture, distinct cultures in different neighborhoods, historical landmarks, celebrity homes and natural scenery.

“There are one or two books about neighborhoods in Queens but really no guide book completely dedicated to Queens,” Onofri said. 

The opportunity to write this book came after Onofri, a licensed New York City sightseeing guide, wrote “Walking Brooklyn: 30 Tours Exploring Historical Legacies.” 

Her publisher became interested in doing a version for Queens, and Onofri said she jumped at the idea because a lot of people had asked her to write a walking tour book for the borough she has called home for decades.

“I liked the idea because I can say I live in Queens,” Onofri said. 

To compile the book, which took about a year to finish, Onofri traveled the borough on nothing but her two legs and public transportation. She sketched out routes based on what she already had in mind or knew she wanted to include. Other locations, she said, she roamed and discovered in order to create the detailed walks. 

“There are a lot of people that drive around and don’t get around in public transportation much,” Onofri said. “[The book] is just encouraging them to go a few neighborhoods over, which they would normally drive pass on the highway.”

The neighborhoods featured in the book go from Long Island City and Astoria all the way to Howard Beach and the Rockaways. Along with these, Onofri also spent time in the borough’s parks such as Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Alley Pond Park and Rockaway Park. 

The book, with photographs taken by the author, includes maps of the area that will be walked, nearby trains or buses, points of interest in the neighborhood, historical facts and detailed directions of how to get around. 

Part of the Hunters Point Historic District on 45th Ave. in Long Island City (Photo by  Adrienne Onofri)

Part of the Hunters Point Historic District on 45th Ave. in Long Island City (Photo by Adrienne Onofri)

“There are things you walk past and don’t notice,” Onofri said. “This book has the discoveries of things that you might not take the time to notice regularly.”

While working on the book, Onofri said she realized there were instances where she noticed things she hadn’t before. Also, one of the issues was trying to fit as much as she could in the 254-page book, with some things just not being able to be included. 

“There was a lot of stuff to learn, whether it was just some place I had been only a couple of times or a place I really didn’t know much about before,” she said. 

Onofri said she is still conducting tours in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens. 

To contact Onofri to schedule a tour, email walkingqueens@gmail.com.

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24-Hour Repackathon set to break record


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of City Harvest

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, one organization is looking to make a difference while also setting a new record.

City Harvest, a food rescue organization founded in 1982, will host its second annual 24-Hour Repackathon on Thursday in Long Island City with the mission to help feed hungry New Yorkers across the five boroughs over the winter and holidays.

“This is part of our initiative to keep shelves at food pantries stocked for the winter,” said Samantha Park, manager of communications for City Harvest. “For a lot of people they have to make the difficult choice between paying rent and putting food on the table for their children.”

During the event, which will be held at City Harvest’s LIC Food Rescue Facility located at 55-01 Second St., more than 300 volunteers will repack bulk food donations into family-sized packages for 24 hours straight.

Participants include members from corporations such as Bank of America, Credit Suisse, Wells Fargo and many others. Restaurants, including Astoria’s Butcher Bar, will also donate food for volunteers.

“It’s just a great way to give back. The holidays are around the corner and people are always thinking about ways they could help,” Park said. “These are big businesses in New York City giving back to the community.”


Starting at 5 p.m. Thursday, volunteers will arrive in groups of 50 for three-hour shifts in which they will repack packages that will go out to over 500 food pantries and soup kitchens across the city.

At last year’s inaugural 24-Hour Repackathon, City Harvest set a world record by repacking close to 215,000 pounds of food, according to Park. This year, the organization plans to surpass that record with the goal of repacking 225,000 pounds, enough to feed more than 2,000 families.

During the last shift on Friday, which will end at 5 p.m., special guest volunteers will include U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and former New York Knicks player John Starks.

“There are times that we can all come together and help each other,” Park said. “That’s what our organization is all about, having New Yorkers come together and help each other out.”

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LIC beer hall delays opening to March


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Renderings courtesy of Bierocracy

Owners of a new beer hall and restaurant in Long Island City called Bierocracy are now hoping to open in March after delays because of structural issues with the building.

Construction is currently underway for the 4,000-square-foot establishment, which will have 200 seats, including a 28-seat bar. The eatery will serve Central European food and a select mix of European beers.

The owners plan on making the beer hall a city chain, and decided on the 12-23 Jackson Ave. spot for their first location because of Long Island City’s status as a hot new neighborhood.

“The reason why we got into Long Island City is because it is an up-and-coming area and, quite frankly, it’s lacking something like this,” said Tom Rajic, an owner of Bierocracy. “We feel this is the right place.”

Bierocracy hopes to promote a social environment, where patrons will sit and interact with each other around community tables and a bar, without the distractions of televisions, Rajic said.


Currently the group is still searching for a head chef, and interior construction work is still ongoing.

The restaurant’s hours haven’t been fully decided, but lunch will also be served.

Construction going on at the building.

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Two floors of fun at the Flea


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com


The weather might be getting colder, but the LIC Flea & Food is staying hot indoors.

The popular Long Island City flea market made its move indoors to the warehouse, connected to the original outdoor lot on the corner of Fifth Street and 46th Avenue, to launch the LIC Flea Holiday Market.

Every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 21, the indoor holiday market will include two floors of a mix of LIC Flea favorite vendors and new faces offering local, handmade and uniquely curated items. Vendors will also be selling delicious treats and drinks. There are also two special boutique spots in the inner building. Shoppers will be able to find something for everyone on their lists.

The LIC Flea Beer Garden also remains open on the second floor of the warehouse. The beer garden offers wine and beer selections from local breweries SingleCut Beersmiths, Queens Brewery, Finback Brewery and Rockaway Brewing Company. Drink specials including $2 beer and $3 wine are available from 4 to 5 p.m.

There will be great events in the weekends to come such as Lego building, cupcake making, pictures with Santa Claus and much more. Dandy Wellington and His Band will be performing this weekend at the flea market.

Shoppers can also enter the LIC Flea Black Friday challenge by stopping at the market and getting all their holiday shopping done before Dec. 1 for a chance to win $100 in Flea Bucks. See www.facebook.com/licflea for how to enter.

The LIC Flea Holiday Market is open every Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
For more information visit www.licflea.com or www.facebook.com/licflea.

As the LIC Flea Holiday Market hits its third week, here are some vendors to check out the next time you visit the popular indoor flea market.

1. Soap for Sinners
www.soapforsinners.com
Soap for Sinners is a local soap company offering a variety of bath and body products made with essential oils and plant-based ingredients. With a holiday-inspired line with names like “Lump of Coal” and “Pout Purifier,” you can find nourishing and playful gifts. Cleanse your body and soul with this fresh, eco-friendly and cruelty-free brand.

2. El Jefe’sNachoria
www.facebook/ElJefesNachoria
El Jefe’sNachoria offers satisfaction for “unsatisfied nacho connoisseurs.” They focus on simple, fresh ingredients with big flavor. Each order is built so that every bite has the right amount of “stuff.” El Jefe’sNachoria uses locally-made tortillas and flame toasts their chips to order. “El Jefe” has mastered the art of the nacho and is eager to share it with you!

3. Paradox Thrift Shop
www.paradoxthriftshop.com
The vintage jewelry and clothing collection at Paradox Thrift Shop features unique and timeless fashion at affordable prices. They specialize in bohemian drop necklaces, hippie earrings and retro cocktail rings, as well as one-of-a-kind casual, dress and outerwear for women and men. The “thrifty” vintage treasures are perfect for the eye-catching gift or a guiltless present for yourself.

4. QueensPopPhoto
www.queenspopphoto.com
QueensPopPhoto creates new and exciting photos of Astoria and LIC. The photos are saturated with unique colors, textures and graphics, resulting in vibrant and nostalgic images like nothing you’ve ever seen before!

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LIC Partnership annual luncheon focuses on the future


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre 

The Long Island City Partnership’s 27th annual trade show and luncheon on Thursday highlighted the answer to the question on everyone’s mind — what now?

While the event celebrated the growth of the burgeoning neighborhood, keynote speaker Kenneth Adams, president and CEO of Empire State Development (ESD), emphasized state initiatives to help advance the area further, including a possible $100,000 state grant for a planning study of LIC.

The LIC Partnership has applied for the grant, and the state is currently reviewing about 2,600 projects for funds. The applications that win state funding will be announced in December, but the LIC planning study has been upgraded to a priority plan, Adams said, because members of the Regional Economic Development Council from the five boroughs support it.

“The study is necessary, because we have to make sure that there is the opportunity for small businesses to survive in this market because the cost of property has dramatically escalated and the cost of rents are following,” said Community Board 2 Chairman Joseph Conley, who received the William D. Modell Community Service Award at the event. “There needs to be this study to say what is the unintended consequences so far of development and zoning and how do we look forward to maintain that good balance of live, work and play.”

Adams said Long Island City and Astoria will also be affected by the incoming students, faculty, and researchers coming to the future Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island, and that the ESD has provided funding to work on a tech incubator for the area with the advocacy group Coalition for Queens.

The Room 2

Turning to past achievements, the LIC Partnership honored TF Cornerstone founders K. Thomas and Frederick Elghanayan for their investments in the neighborhood.

Recently, the firm completed its 10-year, $1.4 billion Center Boulevard project, which includes six residential towers on the Long Island City waterfront for a community of more than 6,000 people.

TF Cornerstone was also selected to develop two residential towers for the second phase of the city’s Hunter’s Point South mega affordable housing project.

The buildings will have 1,193 new apartments, 796 of which will be affordable, and the towers will also feature a gym, rooftop gardens and decks, and an on-site senior recreational center.

“It gives me great pleasure to come out to our Long Island City site and to see people pushing carriages around and riding bicycles. It’s like a small city,” Frederick said. “I think other [investors] are going to continue to come in, because it’s established now.”

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Urban Market opens in Long Island City


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

Supermarket chain Key Food will open its first Long Island City “Urban Market” on Friday, the company posted on Facebook and its website.

The new 8,000-square-foot supermarket will be located at 50-01 2nd St. near the waterfront.

There will be a grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony at noon on Friday, and Borough President Melinda Katz will be in attendance, according to Key Food.

Hours for the new supermarket will be 7 a.m. to midnight Monday through Saturday, and 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sunday.

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