Mayor de Blasio and Queens Officials Break Ground on Hunter's Point South Phase II
Shovels go in the ground on new roads, sidewalks, community space, infrastructure for a diverse, new neighborhood
Hunter's Point South will be largest affordable housing development in NYC since the 1970s
60 percent of 3,000 new apartments affordable to low-, moderate- and middle-income families
November, 23rd 2015 - QUEENS—Mayor Bill de Blasio today broke ground on new infrastructure for the largest new housing complex built in New York City in nearly forty years, and the largest affordable housing construction project to date under the Housing New York plan. Phase II of Hunter's Point South will create nearly 3,000 new apartments, at least 60 percent of which will be affordable to low-, moderate-, and middle-income families. Between phases I and II, Hunter's Point South will build 5,000 new apartments.
Today's groundbreaking marks the commencement of work on vital infrastructure at the Hunter's Point South site, consisting of a new street network with sewers, water main and utility work, as well as the new 11-acre waterfront park. The site will include 100,000 square feet of retail space as well as new community facility space. And the new citywide ferry system launching in 2017 will link the neighborhood directly to the Bronx, Brooklyn and Manhattan. Housing New York committed $99 million for the phase II infrastructure and waterfront park, which will support four new mixed-use housing parcels to be developed by the City's Department of Housing Preservation and Development. The NYC Economic Development Corporation's construction of the phase II infrastructure, roadways, and waterfront park is expected to be completed in 2018. Housing construction will commence immediately thereafter.
"We're building a new neighborhood from the ground-up, from its streets to its parks to its transit. This is going to be the biggest affordable housing project built in a generation, and it's going to ensure that this corner of Queens – despite all the market pressures driving up rents – will remain a diverse place for working people," said Mayor Bill de Blasio.
"This is the type of smart redevelopment that is increasingly a hallmark of our borough, where we're building not just housing but full neighborhoods for families," said Queens Borough President Melinda Katz.
"Today's groundbreaking is great news for the current and future residents of Long Island City. This $100 million investment into building new streets, sewer lines, infrastructure upgrades, as well as the expansion of Hunters Point South Park, will ensure all Long Island City residents have the quality of life they deserve. We must build multiple new schools and more affordable housing units in addition to those built here already to make sure we have all of the services families need to thrive," said Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer.
"The Phase II of Hunters Point South will not only provide additional units of affordable housing in Western Queens but will also include open space for much needed schools" said Assembly Member Catherine Nolan. "As our community continues to grow these improvements to the current infrastructure are much needed."
"The rapid development of Long Island City has priced too many of our neighbors who helped make our community so desirable out of their own neighborhoods," said State Senator Michael Gianaris. "Today's announcement renews our commitment to maintaining the character of our community by keeping it from being affordable only for the wealthy."
"This administration is committed to creating strong, livable neighborhoods where all New Yorkers have the opportunity to succeed and support their families," said NYCEDC President Maria Torres-Springer. "New York City has not seen an affordable housing development like Hunter's Point South in 40 years, and today's groundbreaking represents the next step in providing thousands of families with a quality home."
"This next phase of Hunter's Point South is an important part of the effort to revitalize an area of Long Island City that had been neglected for more than a generation. We celebrate shovels in the ground today for the second phase of a development that will bring online 5,000 incredible apartments for low-, moderate-, and middle-income families. I want to congratulate our sister agencies, and all of our partners, who are working so hard to design and build both a beautiful building and a safe, wonderful, and thriving neighborhood," said HPD Commissioner Vicki Been.
"The next phase of Hunter's Point South represents the type of comprehensive, multi-agency approach to neighborhood planning that was envisioned in Housing New York," said HDC President Gary Rodney. "This mixed-use development was conceptualized holistically to create not only new affordable housing, but the infrastructure – the streets, retail, parks, and schools – that families and communities need to thrive. We are excited about this next phase of the project and look forward to working with all our partners to cross the finish line on this dynamic new neighborhood."
"Hunters Point South Park, once the site of an industrial shipping hub, is now one of the city's premier waterfront destinations," said Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP. "Since the first phase opened in 2013, this park has become a popular spot to enjoy the city skyline while getting in some exercise, or waiting for the East River Ferry. We're looking forward to extending this continuous green ribbon down the Long Island City waterfront."
Hunter's Point South is a massive, multi-phase project. The Phase I infrastructure, roadways, and waterfront park was completed by NYCEDC in August 2013, and will support mixed-use developments totaling more than 2,000 housing units. The park includes a central green, a playground, a waterside promenade and additional recreation space, as well as a 13,000-square-foot pavilion housing comfort stations, concessions, an elevated café plaza, and a maintenance facility for the Department of Parks and Recreation.
The Hunter's Point South project has led to the creation of 3,400 linear feet of new roadways that are now open to the public. The infrastructure, roadway, and park design was led by Arup, which served as the project's prime consultant and lead engineer. Landscape architecture firm Thomas Balsley Associates and architecture firm Weiss/Manfredi designed the park. The design was driven by a commitment to creating a vibrant recreational environment for New Yorkers and visitors while adhering to principles of sustainability. These include the pursuit of alternative transportation options, such as the inclusion of a protected bikeway, introduction of a bioswale along the length of the park, extensive planting of native species of grasses and trees, use of environmentally sustainable wood, the remediation of formerly contaminated industrial areas, and the solar orientation of the site and comfort station to optimize passive heating and cooling, and solar energy generation.