Hunter’s Point Housing Plan Unveiled
On February 16, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg unveiled the development plan for Hunter’s Point South, the largest new affordable housing complex to be built in New York City since the 1970s. A development team, consisting of Phipps Houses, Related Companies and Monadnock Construction, has been selected through a competitive process to build the residential portion of the first phase of the Queens waterfront complex, which includes two mixed-use buildings comprising more than 900 housing units and roughly 20,000 square feet of new retail space. At least 75 percent of the housing will be targeted to low, moderate and middle-income families.
Bloomberg was joined at the announcement, which took place adjacent to the development site at the Waterfront Crab House on Borden Avenue in Long Island City, by Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert K. Steel, Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Rafael E. Cestero, New York City Housing Development Corporation President Marc Jahr, Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe, Borough President Helen M. Marshall, Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer, New York City Economic Development Corporation Chief Operating Officer Josh Wallack, Phipps Houses Group President & CEO Adam Weinstein, Related Companies Executive Vice President Bruce A. Beal Jr., Monadnock Construction President Nick Lembo and Community Board 2 Chair Joseph Conley.
“At Hunter’s Point South, not only will we build the largest new affordable housing complex in more than three decades, we’ll do it on long-vacant waterfront property that has incredible views and sits adjacent to one of New York City’s fastest growing neighborhoods,” Bloomberg said. “Through our New Housing Marketplace Plan, we’re building 165,000 affordable units in neighborhoods in all five boroughs, but no where else will there be such a large infusion of new, affordable units. All told, the project will provide new homes for 5,000 New York City families, more than 900 in this first phase, while creating thousands of jobs.”
The first phase, to be completed by late 2013, includes five acres of new waterfront parkland, a new 1,100-seat intermediate and high school, new retail space and parking.
“Today we move forward on the road that leads to the creation of an entirely new community on the East River waterfront,” Marshall said. “This community will enjoy the benefits of much-needed affordable housing, retail space and parkland, located in a unique setting. Major infrastructure and surface improvements will complement the attractive housing and retail opportunities and help to make Hunter’s Point South a success story in this second decade of the 21st Century.”
Designed by SHoP Architects, with Ismael Leyva Architects, the team’s plan for the initial two residential mixed-use buildings features classic tripartite building composition in a modern, façade design. The development plan calls for the creation of vibrant retail corridors along 50th Avenue as well as Second Street, which will ultimately serve as a spine that connects all of Hunter’s Point South.
The units will be targeted to families with household incomes ranging from $32,000 to $130,000 per year for a family of four. Twenty percent of the units will be available to families earning between 40 percent and 80 percent of Area Median Income (AMI), 20 percent to families earning up to 130 percent AMI, and 35 percent to families earning up to 165 percent AMI.
“From affordable housing, to retail space, a new school and even a waterfront park, this state of the art development can serve as a model in urban planning and design,” Van Bramer said. “Hunter’s Point and greater Long Island City is an amazingly vibrant and diverse place to live, work and create.”
The first phase of Hunter’s Point will transform a total of more than 800,000 square feet of vacant waterfront land bounded by 50th Avenue to the north, 2nd Street to the east, Borden Avenue to the south and Center Boulevard to the west. Infrastructure work, including the installation of sewers, watermains, roadways, sidewalks and parking, will begin in March and is expected to be completed during the Spring of 2013. Park construction will begin this summer. The two residential buildings, including the retail space, will begin construction in 2012 and are expected to take up to 24 months to complete. The new school, which will be built by the New York City Schools Construction Authority, will open in the Fall of 2013.
The East River Ferry pilot program set to launch this spring will also service Hunter’s Point South. The ferry will stop at the southern tip of Hunter’s Point on the waterfront between Borden Avenue and 54th Avenue, with service to 34th Street in Manhattan as well as Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan.