All posts by Devin Gannon

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Long Island City, Policy, Top Stories

Amazon will not move to Long Island City

By Devin Gannon, Thu, February 14, 2019

Via CityRealty

Amazon said on Thursday it will no longer build a new headquarters in Long Island City, the New York Times reported. The online retail giant selected the Queens neighborhood last year for its “HQ2” campus following a 14-month nationwide contest. Amazon had promised to bring 25,000 jobs to New York City in exchange for nearly $3 billion in state and city incentives. In a statement, the company said it does not plan to look for another location at this time.

Details here

Hotels, Queens, Top Stories

The TWA Hotel at JFK is now accepting reservations

By Devin Gannon, Thu, February 14, 2019

Photo by David Mitchell

The TWA Hotel at John F. Kennedy Airport is now accepting reservations for its 1960s-themed guestrooms, ahead of its soft opening on May 15. Rooms, decorated with Eero Saarinen-designed Knoll furnishings and martini bars, start at $249 per night. The 512-room hotel sits in two low-rise buildings behind Saarinen’s iconic TWA Flight Center, which has been closed since 2001 and which will serve as the hotel’s lobby.

Details here

Transportation

Via Oran Viriyincy on Flickr

With the L train shutdown called off last month after years of preparing for its impact on commuters, many New Yorkers were left wondering what would happen to the mitigation efforts planned for both Manhattan and Brooklyn. According to amNY, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority no longer sees the need for a busway on 14th Street, which was intended to limit car traffic during the L train shutdown. While the MTA said it intends to run buses as often as every three minutes on 14th Street when L train service is reduced this spring, critics say buses will move at a sluggish pace.

More here

More Top Stories, Policy

Via CityRealty

A package of legislation being introduced in the City Council on Wednesday aims to make renting in New York City more affordable. The bills, drafted by Council Members Keith Powers and Carlina Rivera, would limit broker fees and security deposits each to one month’s rent, as first reported by the Wall Street Journal. The bills come after a report by City Comptroller Scott Stringer released last summer found that New Yorkers paid over $507 million in security deposits in 2016.

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Architecture, Nomad

Last December, SL Green announced plans to renovate its building at One Madison Avenue with an 18-floor addition and modern interiors. On Tuesday, CityRealty uncovered a few new renderings of the planned redevelopment, which is being designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox. The developer will reduce the 13-story building to its ninth floor and then add the 18 column-free floors above, as well as wraparound and rooftop terraces overlooking Madison Square Park.

See them here

Long Island City, Policy

amazon, long island city, amazon nyc

Rendering via NYCEDC

News broke last week that Amazon was reconsidering its move to New York City after facing opposition from residents and local officials. But a new poll released on Tuesday shows a majority of New York voters actually support the deal for the tech company to open its headquarters in Queens. According to the Siena College Research Institute, 56 percent of voters in the state back the project, while 36 percent disapprove. City residents support the Amazon deal even more, with 58 percent approving, according to the poll.

Details here

Design, Inwood

Designs sought for two new waterfront parks in Inwood

By Devin Gannon, Mon, February 11, 2019

inwood rezoning, upper manhattan, bill de blasio, councilman ydanis rodriguea

Inwood Hill Park via Flickr

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration is seeking ideas for two new waterfront parks in Inwood, as first reported by Curbed. The city’s Economic Development Corporation released a request for proposals on Monday for a consultant or team to design a pair of parks along the Harlem River in the Manhattan neighborhood. The plan falls under the Inwood rezoning, which was approved last August and intends to deliver $200 million in public investments. During the process, stakeholders pushed for new open space and upgraded parks to be included in the rezoning, as the waterfront remains inaccessible to many in the community.

More here

Policy, real estate trends

220 Central Park SOuth, Vornado, Robert A.M., Stern

Via Vornado Realty Trust and Robert A.M. Stern Architects

Last month, billionaire Ken Griffin closed on a penthouse at 220 Central Park South for over $239 million, making it the most expensive home ever sold in the United States. Griffin, the founder of the hedge fund Citadel, said he will not use the pricey pad as a primary residence, but instead as “a place to stay when he’s in town.” The staggering sale has renewed support from public officials for a pied-à-terre tax, which would place a yearly surcharge on homes worth $5 million and up, and apply to non-primary residences, as reported by the New York Times.

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Long Island City, Policy

Amazon is rethinking its move to Long Island City

By Devin Gannon, Fri, February 8, 2019

Via Wikimedia

After facing months of intense backlash from residents and local officials, Amazon is rethinking its plan to open a massive complex in the Queens neighborhood of Long Island City, the Washington Post reported on Friday. Sources told the newspaper, which is owned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, that executives at the tech company have had discussions to reassess the plan to open its “HQ2” in New York City. “The question is whether it’s worth it if the politicians in New York don’t want the project, especially with how people in Virginia and Nashville have been so welcoming,” a source told the Post.

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Art

Ten bronze statues of inspiring women will be installed in New York City this summer as part of a project that hopes to address the lack of monuments of women in the city. Artists Gillie and Marc, the couple behind Astor Place’s 17-foot-tall rhino sculpture, on Thursday launched “Statues for Equality,” which aims to increase the number of statues of women in NYC by 200 percent. Currently, only five of the city’s 150 statues depict nonfictional women.

More here

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