Amazon looking at proposed Anable Basin mixed-use site for new home in Long Island City

Posted On Wed, November 7, 2018 By

Posted On Wed, November 7, 2018 By In Long Island City, New Developments, Policy

Rendering courtesy of WXY architecture + urban design

With Amazon nearing a deal to make Long Island City home to its second headquarters, a big question remains: Where in the Queens neighborhood will the tech-giant house its 25,000 employees? One possible location sits within a waterfront area known as Anable Basin, named for a 150-year-old inlet, sources familiar with the plan told Politico New York. As 6sqft reported last November, the family-owned plastics company Plaxall, who owns the site, proposed a massive rezoning of the area that would allow for 335,000 square feet for industrial spaces, nearly 5,000 housing units, and a new public school.

The rezoning of Anable Basin would cover nearly 15 acres; Plaxall currently owns over 12 acres already. The new district would be bordered by 45th Avenue and 44th Drive to the north, Vernon Boulevard to the east, 46th Road to the South, with the East River to the west.

Jonathan Drescher, the president of Plaxall, said his family created a careful framework for a rezoning. “Through our plan, the new Anable Basin would be a place where people live and work in the same place–enhancing quality of life, productivity, and easing the demands on transit and energy infrastructure by placing workplaces close to home,” Drescher said in the proposal’s announcement last year.

If the rezoning is approved, Plaxall said construction is anticipated to start in 2020, but there is no set timeline. The company’s environmental impact analysis predicts a phased 15-year build-out, with a completion date in 2034. (See Plaxall’s presentation here).

TF cornerstone, 44th Drive, Anable Basin, LIC, Long Island City

TF cornerstone, 44th Drive, Anable Basin, LIC, Long Island City
LIC Innovation Center; renderings via TF Cornerstone

The live-work project is similar to TF Cornerstone’s plan for a mixed-use complex on four acres of city-owned land nearby in the Anable Basin area. This plan, which requires zoning changes, includes new office, retail, and manufacturing space, as well as two high-rise residential towers.

TF Cornerstone, who was chosen by the city’s economic development corporation, also announced in September plans to create public open space along the waterfront as part of its “Innovation Center.” The park will focus on resiliency and sustainability, emphasizing the preservation of marine life at the cove.

It was reported on Tuesday that Amazon will split its “HQ2” between the Queens neighborhood and Crystal City, Virginia. This new plan, which has not yet been officially announced by the company, would split its workforce of 50,000 employees evenly between the two locations.

Residents have been expressed concerns over Amazon landing in LIC due to the neighborhood’s already-strained infrastructure. Last year, a study found the neighborhood had more apartments built since 2010 than any other neighborhood in the country.

And TF Cornerstone is working with the plastics site to make sure the two groups are on the same page with their projects, QNS.com reported in September.

“We have joint meetings with city planning all the time with Plaxall to make sure the projects plug in together,” Jon McMillian, the director of planning at TF Cornerstone, said. “Our open spaces meet together [so with Plaxall we put together] comprehensive resiliency plans. We’re doing a lot of work with Plaxall.”

[Via Politico NY]

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