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.
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.
Rendering via CRÈME / Jun Aizaki Architecture and Design
6sqft reported last May on a proposal for a civic design project aimed at reconnecting the neighborhoods of Greenpoint and Long Island City. Brooklyn-based studio CRÈME‘s concept, called Timber Bridge at LongPoint Corridor, calls for constructing a floating bridge made of durable timber that would span Newtown Creek and expand past it to the LIRR rail yard in LIC. Not only would the new bridge provide greater access to transit options, but, according to the design team, Timber Bridge would give cyclists and pedestrians a safer commute than the car-jammed Pulaski Bridge. The Brooklyn Eagle reports that this grassroots initiative is now just a bit closer to becoming a reality with the creation of a nonprofit and new support from local civic leaders.
Bridge love, this way
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.
Since Amazon announced it had selected Long Island City for its new headquarters last fall, a lot of people have wondered what will happen to the neighborhood and its surrounding communities. While LIC has already undergone a series of radical changes of the past two decades—first there was an influx of artists seeking larger live-work spaces and later a wave of condo developments—the arrival of Amazon promises to have an even deeper impact on LIC.
And the potential negative effect of the tech giant moving into town has not gone unnoticed by public officials and locals, who have led a strong opposition campaign. It was reported on Friday that Amazon was reconsidering its plan to move to the neighborhood after facing an intense backlash from those who fear increased rents and even more congestion. But with no plan to officially abandon Queens, it’s important to understand what could happen if Amazon does put down roots in LIC by first looking at how the company has already changed Seattle, where it first set up shop back in 1994.
More on the effect
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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American Airlines and British Airways will invest $344 million over the next three years to revamp its terminal at John F. Kennedy Airport, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday. The project includes expanding and improving the customer experience at Terminal 8, where British Airways will move to from its current location in Terminal 7. The project falls under Cuomo’s $13 billion plan to overhaul JFK announced last October. The Port Authority is not contributing funds to the Terminal 8 project; 90 percent of the governor’s JFK plan will be privately funded.
President Donald Trump’s boyhood home in Jamacia Estates is set to hit the market this week for a pricey $2.9 million. The home, which is not owned by Trump or his organization, is decorated somewhat as a shrine to the president, with lots of framed photos of him, a copy of “The Art of the Deal,” and a life-size cut out of the Queens native in the living room. The owner, who bought the property in 2017 for $2.14 million under the guise of Trump Birth House LLC, requests offers be submitted via email, along with proof of funds. The home will then be sold through a closed bidding process, as first reported by the Wall Street Journal.
A rendering of One Court Square in LIC, where Amazon will temporarily move this year; via NYCEDC
During a heated City Council hearing on Wednesday, Amazon said it will oppose efforts by its New York City workforce to unionize. Speaker Corey Johnson asked Brian Huseman, the public policy vice president for Amazon, if the company would allow workers to unionize while remaining neutral during the process. Huseman responded, “No, sir,” establishing a tense tone for the rest of the hearing, the Daily News reported.
Images (L to R): One Flatbush, 420 Kent, 33 Bond Street, and The Mosaic.
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