Tag Archives: Queens

Identify this place in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: Rockaway Beach near Beach 80th Street

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Queens rents take dive, but home market still strong: report


| rpozarycki@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

Is the rent too damn low in Queens? Not quite, but average rental prices in the “World’s Borough” plunged by nearly 11 percent over the last year, according to a report from Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

Median rents were down 10.7 percent in Queens year-over-year while overall inventory was also down 11.9 percent, the report noted. The average rental price in June was $2,749, or $40.15 per square foot. Last June, the average rent was $2,896, or $45.69 per square foot.

The report, which analyzed the market in northwest Queens, reflected overall “weaker results” in that region. Results, however, “were mixed across apartment sizes as median rental prices of studio and three-bedroom [units] were higher, while one- and two-bedroom apartments were lower respectively.”

Landlords also had to wait longer to rent out their units, as the average number of days on the market increased from 31 to 36 days over the last year.

Even with the nearly 11 percent dip, renting an apartment in Queens isn’t exactly cheap. The average studio apartment in June 2015 went for $2,348, while the average apartment with three or more bedrooms was $10 shy of $4,000.

While the rental market took a hit, sales in Queens were strong during the second quarter in 2015, Douglas Elliman reported. The median sales price rose 8.5 percent to $385,001 over the last year, marking “the fourth consecutive quarterly increase and the 10th gain in the past 12 quarters.”

The median co-op price rose 5.4 percent to $215,000, while the condo median prices surged by 12.8 percent to a new record of $468,000. The median price for a one- to three-family home also spiked by 6.3 percent to $510,000.

Further reflecting a sellers’ market, the inventory of available one- to three-family homes, as well as co-ops and condominiums, dropped 12.6 percent. Sales increased 5.6 percent, and the average time on market for listings dropped to 92 days, down from 110 at the same time last year.

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New York Hospital Queens renamed NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

File photo

BY KIRSTEN E. PAULSON

There’s a new name for one of Queens’ biggest hospitals.

New York Hospital Queens was renamed on July 1 as NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens. The name change comes as a result of the hospital’s takeover by NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, which was prompted by the need and desire to improve access to state-of-the-art care for Queens residents.

NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens, located in Flushing, has been a member of the New York-Presbyterian Healthcare System for more than 22 years and serves Queens with 535 beds and medical services in 14 departments. Every year, the hospital performs 15,000 surgeries and delivers 4,000 babies, and also provides 162,000 ambulatory visits and 124,000 emergency service visits.

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, based in New York City, is one of the largest hospitals in the U.S. with 2,600 beds across six campuses in New York City and Westchester. It is the number one hospital in the five boroughs, and is consistently ranked among the top hospitals in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report.

It is NewYork-Presbyterian’s affiliation with Weill Cornell Medical College and Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons that stands to make the merge beneficial to Queens residents who rely on NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens for health care services. Both institutions are among the leading medical colleges in the country.

“We are pleased to have strengthened our relationship with the leadership, trustees, doctors and staff of New York Hospital Queens,” said Dr. Laura Forese, president of the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System. “Together with Weill Cornell Medical College, we look forward to continuing to provide high-quality, patient-centered care to residents of Queens, as well as enhancing access to the world-class care offered at New York-Presbyterian Hospital’s six campuses in Manhattan and Westchester.”

“Our long relationship with NewYork-Presbyterian has contributed enormous value. As the healthcare landscape continues to evolve, it is becoming increasingly important to work more closely in mutually beneficial relationships that enhance effectiveness and improve quality,” said Stephen S. Mills, president of NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens. “By establishing this closer relationship with NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, one of the country’s leading academic medical centers, we will be able to offer our patients access to cutting-edge treatments in every area of medicine, as well as the same outstanding care that we have provided at our hospital for years.”

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17 indicted following Queens auto theft ring bust


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

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A two-and-a-half-year investigation resulted in charges for 17 individuals involved in a major Queens-based auto theft and “title washing” ring, where high-end vehicles were swiped off city streets and even from dealerships, officials announced Thursday.

“The ring’s members were purportedly highly organized and fast,” Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. “It is alleged that a main ‘steal’ crew would canvas neighborhoods for luxury vehicles to steal and, once a vehicle was found, obtain the vehicle’s VIN, which was then used to make a duplicate key for the vehicle. Armed with the new key, the vehicle was then allegedly stolen — the whole process taking only a few hours. In some cases, crew members allegedly stole vehicles ‘to order.’”

In a 128-count indictment, eight of the defendants have been charged, among other crimes, with enterprise corruption under New York State’s Organized Crime Control Act and are accused of stealing more than 80 automobiles, prosecutors said.

The investigation, by the NYPD’s Auto Crime Division and the district attorney’s office’s Organized Crime and Rackets Bureau, found that those vehicles included pricey GMC Yukon Denalis, BMWs, Range Rovers and Mercedes-Benzes – stolen from Queens and elsewhere between February 22, 2013, and November 29, 2014.

The defendants, such as Franklyn Gutierrez, 33, of Sutter Avenue in Brooklyn, allegedly worked with a main theft crew – including Miguel (“Fello”) Maldonado, 34, of 77th Street in Woodhaven, Ariel Rodriguez, 28, of Highland Place in Brooklyn, German Garcia, 44, of Decatur Street in Brooklyn, and William (“Bori”) Cruz, 32, of Melrose Street in Brooklyn – that took high-end, newer vehicles off New York City streets and from dealerships and sometimes even stole vehicles “to order,” prosecutors said.

After crew members would find a vehicle, they would allegedly acquire the VIN and then take the number to a locksmith to create a key. The crew member would then use the key to drive the car to a location in Queens, where forged documents were created to conceal the vehicle’s true identity. A broker would then allegedly resell the vehicle. Many of the stolen vehicles were allegedly transported across the country, as well as around the world, including as far away as Nigeria and the Dominican Republic.

The indictments additionally charge defendants Onnie (“Sha”) Canady, 52, of 32nd Avenue in East Elmhurst, with being a middleman for stolen car buyers; Henry (“Charlie”) Morrel, 30, of Ridgewood Avenue, in Brooklyn, for having created the forged documents; and Edward (“Chapa”) Gomez, 39, of 100th Avenue in Hollis, as being the alleged black market broker who resold the stolen vehicles.

According to the district attorney’s office, earlier this week, police executed a search warrant at the home of Gomez, where many of the vehicles were taken as part of the operation, and allegedly recovered three kilos of cocaine, one kilo of heroin, a scale and $2,000 in cash.

Luis Ramos, 43, of 49th Street in Brooklyn; Santiago (“C-Lo”) Robinson, 34, of Shore Front in Arverne, Mayovanex Pena-Ortega, 26, of 34 Jerome Street in Brooklyn, Joel Urena, 34, of Beach 40th Street in Far Rockaway; Angel Acosta, 30, of 117th Street in the Richmond Hill; Edgar Rodriguez, 36, of Florida; Luis DeJesus, 32, of Hancock Street in Brooklyn; Angel Batista, 34, of Yonkers; and Walden Clarke, 37, of East 53rd Street in Brooklyn have also been indicted for their alleged participation in the ring. They each face up to seven years in prison if convicted, while the remaining defendants face up to 25 years.

Most of the defendants have been arraigned as of Wednesday, according to the district attorney’s office, but Robinson, Acosta and Rodriguez are currently being sought.

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Identify this place in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: In front of the West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills Gardens

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Enjoy these free summer concerts across Queens parks


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo via queensbp.org/katzconcerts

With the summer heating up, Borough President Melinda Katz announced on Monday a series of free concerts at parks around Queens — from a Beatles cover band in Bayside to reggae in the Rockaways — starting July 12.

“The concert lineup we have arranged for July and August features a wide array of talent that is sure to be enjoyed by Queens residents and visitors alike,” Katz said.

The outdoor music events, dubbed the “Katz Concert Series,” will take place at the following places and dates:

THE TEE-TONES – Motown Concert
Sunday, July 12, at 5 p.m. at East Elmhurst Playground, 100th Street between 24th and 25th avenues in East Elmhurst
In partnership with Kupferberg Center for the Arts and City Council member Julissa Ferreras

YESTERDAY AND TODAY – Beatles Tribute Concert
Sunday, July 19, at 5 p.m. at Crocheron Park, 35th Avenue between Corbett Road and Cross Island Parkway in Bayside
In partnership with Kupferberg Center for the Arts and City Council member Paul Vallone

YESTERDAY AND TODAY – Beatles Tribute Concert
Sunday, July 26, at 5 p.m. at Tudor Park, 133rd Avenue between 81st and 82nd streets in Ozone Park
In partnership with Kupferberg Center for the Arts and City Council member Eric Ulrich

QUEENS SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Sunday, Aug. 9, at 5 p.m. at Forest Park (George Seuffert Bandshell), Woodhaven Boulevard and Forest Park Drive in Woodhaven

THE TEE-TONES – Doo-Wop Concert
Sunday, Aug. 9, at 5 p.m. at Little Bay Park, Totten Avenue at Cross Island Parkway in Bayside
In partnership with Kupferberg Center for the Arts and City Council member Paul Vallone

BRITISH DEPENDENCY – Reggae Concert
Saturday, Aug.15, at 6 p.m. at Rockaway Beach Park, Seagirt Boulevard and Beach 17th Street in Far Rockaway
In partnership with Kupferberg Center for the Arts and City Council member Donovan Richards Jr.

SESSIONS THE BAND – R&B Concert
Sunday, Aug. 23, at 5 p.m. at Springfield Park, Springfield Boulevard between 146th and 147th avenues in Springfield Gardens
In partnership with Kupferberg Center for the Arts and City Council member Donovan Richards Jr.

DDENDYL from Season 6 of NBC’s “The Voice” – American Blues Concert
Thursday, Aug. 27, at 6:30 p.m. at Tribute Park, Beach 116th Street at Beach Channel Drive in Rockaway Park
In partnership with Friends of Tribute Park

MOTOR CITY REVUE – Motown Concert
Sunday, Aug. 30, at 5 p.m. at Astoria Park (Great Lawn), 19th Street between Astoria Park South and Ditmars Boulevard in Astoria
In partnership with Kupferberg Center for the Arts and City Council member Costa Constantinides

Lawn chairs and/or blankets are recommended at the concerts.

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Identify this place in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: St. Nicholas Orthodox Church in Whitestone

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Identify this place in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com


Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: Across from the Broad Channel S train stop in Rockaway Beach. 

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Queens men prefer beards: survey


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Images courtesy of Braun

The obsession with facial hair has been growing in recent years whether it’s as a hipster trend or through contests to crown the best beard.

A survey released Wednesday, commissioned by grooming brand Braun, of New York City men and their grooming habits showed that Queens men are the lowest maintenance bearded men in the city, with 53 percent trimming their beards just once a week.

The majority of Queens men, like the rest of the boroughs, have facial hair, at 63 percent, the survey also said.

Queens followed closely behind Manhattan, which was New York’s most clean-shaven area, with 61 percent of men having facial hair. The Bronx and Brooklyn tie for the least clean-shaven areas with 73 percent of men sporting some sort of facial hair in each borough.

According to the survey, the most popular type of facial hair for Queens men is the full beard, followed by the goatee and moustache combination, and the “balbo” style.

About 57 percent of the borough’s males said they grew a beard because it was convenient, and about 44 percent said a beard made them feel more mature, while around 40 percent said it made them feel cool and 39 percent said it made them feel more stylish.

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Partners were a small influence in why men choose to grow beards, at 10 percent, but once they did, 45 percent said their significant others loved their new fuzz.

But only about a third said they plan to keep their beards for life.

Compared to the other boroughs, Brooklyn men were most likely to lose the beard when it was no longer a fashion trend.

The survey also found that on average it takes New Yorkers 67 days to grow what they consider to be “the perfect beard.”

“Beards have never been more popular and, as a result, men have become much more adventurous and experimental with different facial hair styles,” said Braun grooming ambassador Fabio Vivan. “Your facial hair is an integral part of your own distinctive look. It should be tailored to suit your face shape and improve your image; however, many men don’t know what styles are most flattering or achievable.”

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Cool off for free at these Queens outdoor pools


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of .nycgovparks.org

You don’t need a fancy club membership or the money to put in your own backyard swimming oasis to beat the heat this summer.

Starting Saturday, June 27, the Parks Department is opening its free outdoor pools around the city, including at eight locations in Queens.  All locations are open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. (with a break for cleaning between 3 and 4 p.m.). The season runs through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 7.

Astoria Park
19th Street and 23rd Drive, Astoria
Olympic-sized pool

Fisher Pool
99th Street and 32nd Avenue, East Elmhurst
Outdoor intermediate pool, outdoor wading pool

Fort Totten
338 Story Avenue, Fort Totten Park, Bayside
Outdoor intermediate pool, outdoor wading pool, outdoor diving pool

Liberty Park Pool
173rd Street and 106th Avenue, Jamaica
Outdoor intermediate pool, outdoor wading pool

Marie Curie Park
211th Street and 46th Avenue, Bayside
Outdoor mini pool

P.S. 10
45th Street and 30th Road, Astoria
Outdoor mini pool

P.S. 186 Playground
Little Neck Parkway and 72nd Avenue, Glen Oaks
Outdoor mini pool

Windmuller Park
54th Street and 39th Road, Woodside
Outdoor mini pool

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Identify this place in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: St. Andrew Avellino Parish on 158th Street in Flushing

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Identify this place in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: Frank Charles Park in Howard Beach

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Identify this place in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: Jamaica Avenue and Sutphin Boulevard in Jamaica 

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Where to find farmers markets in Queens


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

Summer brings a bounty of fruits and vegetables as well as the opening of farmers markets around the borough where residents can purchase them.

GrowNYC‘s Jackson Heights, Sunnyside and Forest Hills greenmarkets are open year-round, but many of Queens’ other farmers markets don’t open until June or July.

Astoria Greenmarket
14th Street (Between 31st Avenue and 31st Road)
Open Wednesdays, 7/10 – 11/18
8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Corona Greenmarket
Roosevelt Avenue at 103rd Street
Open Fridays, 7/10 – 11/20
8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Elmhurst Greenmarket
41st Avenue (Between 80th and 81th Streets)
Open Tuesdays, 6/2 to 11/24
8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Forest Hills Greenmarket
South side of Queens Boulevard at 70th Avenue
Open Sundays, year-round
8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Jackson Heights Greenmarket
34th Avenue at 78th Street
Open Sundays, year-round
8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Jamaica Down to Earth Farmers Market
160th Street off Jamaica Avenue
Open Fridays, 6/19 – 11/20
Open Saturdays, 6/20 – 11/21
8:30 a.m– 4 p.m.

Queens Botanical Garden’s Down to Earth Farmers Market
Dahlia Avenue off Main Street (sidewalk outside Garden)
Open Fridays, 6/20 – 11/20
8:30 am – 4:00 p.m.

Ridgewood Youth Market
Myrtle Avenue and Cypress Avenue
Saturdays, 7/11 – 11/21
8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Rockaway Beach Youthmarket
Beach Channel Drive at Beach 58th Street
Open Saturdays, 7/11 – 11/21
10:30 am – 3:00 pm

Socrates Sculpture Park Greenmarket
Vernon Boulevard and Broadway
Open Saturdays, 6/6 – 11/21
8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Sunnyside Greenmarket
Skillman Avenue (Between 42nd and 43rd streets)
Open Saturdays, year-round
8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

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Port Authority selects group to build, manage LaGuardia Airport’s Central Terminal Building


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey finally announced Thursday the winning group for a $3.6 billion project to build and manage LaGuardia Airport’s new Central Terminal Building.

The bi-state agency selected LaGuardia Gateway Partners, a team comprised of Swedish construction firm Skanska, Vantage Airport Group and various financial firms. The group was selected over the other project finalist, which includes a team comprised of Tutor Perini Corp., Goldman Sachs Group, TAV Construction and other firms.

The Global Gateway Alliance, which supports improvements to the local airports, applauded the selection of the partnership, and called for the Port Authority to act quickly so the team can start the project to replace the more than five-decade-old building, known as Terminal B.

“A new terminal is the linchpin in finally changing LaGuardia’s reputation from ‘third world’ to world class,” the organization said in a statement. “But the project has already faced delays, so we urge the Port and the winning consortium to finalize the agreement quickly and get redevelopment underway so travelers don’t have to wait one day longer than necessary for a first-class experience at LaGuardia.”

The Port Authority was supposed to pick the group that would build and manage the terminal last year, but that selection was delayed because Gov. Andrew Cuomo launched a design contest for the terminal. The Port Authority hasn’t selected a winning design despite having announced the group that will build the terminal.

An advisory panel overseeing the redesign contest recommended that the new terminal include a central “great hall” to serve as the airport’s entry, a 100- to 200-room hotel in the airport, people-movers between terminals, and docking for a future AirTrain, which Cuomo announced earlier this year.

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