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City unveils plan for 1,000 rentals, manufacturing space on Long Island City waterfront

The project north of Hunters Point South will include a new school, an esplanade, and office space

In the foreground is a pedestrian plaza with seating and green space. In the background are many city buildings. TF Cornerstone via the New York Times

Another day, another 1,000-rental development announced for Long Island City. To be fair, this one’s been in the works for a while, and is the product of a request for proposals issued by the city in February 2016. After a year of honing in, the city has announced by way of a spot in the New York Times that developer TF Cornerstone will take that project, slated for two city-owned lots north of the Hunters Point South development, on the other side of Anable Basin, at 5-40 44th Drive and 4-99 44th Drive.

The task the city presented in their call was this: Design a mixed-use project with 1,000 apartments and at least 300,000 square feet of commercial office or light manufacturing space. TF Cornerstone’s proposal loops in a laundry list of uses, and will include 100,000 square feet of manufacturing space, 400,000 square feet of office space, 19,000 square feet of retail, an 80,000-square-foot public elementary school, and a one-acre waterfront park that will adjoin with an existing public pier.

The development will also consist of two towers that taper as they reach towards 650 and 500 feet. The 1,000 apartments will be split between studios, one-, two-, and three-bedroom units. Twenty-five percent of the apartments will be set aside as affordable housing. The residential amenities and layouts, for the most part, are still being hashed out.

Deputy mayor Alicia Glen told the Times she hopes the project will help dispel the idea that luxury housing is detrimental to industrial neighborhoods because it uses land that would otherwise be given over to industrial use. “All of the battles over rezoning pitted jobs versus housing, which is something we need to get beyond,” she told the Times. “I hope this can change the conversation in a more positive way.”

The project will rise on city-owned land covered in parking lots and and a road-repair facility. It will also fell Water’s Edge, the nearly four-decade-old waterfront restaurant whose owner shuttered the joint in 2015 after being indicted on bribery and fraud charges.

In order to move forward, the project will need to win zoning approval. Expecting all goes as planned, this whopper of a project is expected by 2022.