Community council rejects massive development project in Astoria – Queens Daily Eagle

New board member Brian Romero, who is also Queens member Jessica Gonzalez-Rojas, was the first to put forward a motion to reject the project.

“I felt like this was the wrong thing to do at this time,” Romero told the Eagle on Wednesday. “As someone who has displaced myself in Queens…I know this pain and what it means to be separated from your family and trying to figure out how to settle down again.”

He added, “From the beginning, we were very clear that we were in the midst of a housing crisis… and they kept coming back and making excuses for not doing so.” “We need more affordable housing and 25 percent is the bare legal requirement. We just thought that wasn’t enough and it was a disservice to a lot of New Yorkers.”

Romero said he hopes the board’s advisory vote will be seriously considered by the president of Queens, the city planning committee and local city council member Julie Won, who will all be casting votes — some advisory, some binding — on the project in the coming months.

“There will be ongoing development that will be proposed and I hope this sets a precedent for building 50 percent, 75 percent affordable housing,” Romero said.

A QNS spokesperson spoke of the developer’s commitment to responding to the concerns of local residents and the board of directors.

“The city’s official review process was designed to gather input from the public, and we’re thrilled to receive that input even as we continue to demonstrate that New York City – perhaps now more than ever – needs this $2 billion in private investment that will create much-needed mixed-income homes. and 5,400 jobs, while generating hundreds of millions of dollars to support infrastructure, public safety and education,” the spokesperson said.

QNS innovation will now move to the next level of the city’s standardized land use review procedure.

Queensboro President Donovan Richards will hear a presentation on the project on Thursday, June 30 at 9:30 a.m., via Zoom. He has 30 days from Tuesday, June 21 to issue his advisory opinion on the project.

The developers will then take their proposal to the city planning commission, which will have 60 days to hold a public hearing and issue a vote on the app.

At this point, it will go to the city council and mayor for a vote.

Won has been critical of the project, although she has dealt almost exclusively with what she says is a lack of communication with residents close to the project. She has not yet publicly commented on the merits of the project.

Her predecessor on the board, Jimmy Van Prammer, described the project as “quite out of character for the surrounding neighborhood” shortly after it was first introduced.

Won’s office declined to comment for this story.

No matter where Won lands, her opinion will likely have a huge impact on her classmates’ vote. Although it was challenged last year, members of the House have historically been respected in the legislature.

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