8 THE QUEENS COURIER • MARCH 15, 2018 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM
LIC residents urge city to build new school for area
BY ANGELA MATUA
Describing Long Island City as “Dubai
without the infrastructure,” a civic group
in the neighborhood is asking that the
School Construction Authority (SCA)
purchase a building to create a zoned elementary
Th e fi ve-story building at 27-35 Jackson
Ave. currently houses the Pre-K Center
and will house several kindergarten classes
from P.S./I.S. 78 as a new elementary
school, P.S. 375, is constructed in time for
the 2021-2022 school year.
Th e Court Square Civic Association
(CSCA) created an online petition outlining
its request that the SCA use funds allocated
in the city’s fi ve-year budget to develop
new schools in the area to purchase the
property. Rebecca Barnes, the vice president
and education committee chair of
CSCA, said the Court Square neighborhood
severely lacks schools though its
population is exploding.
“Th ere are no elementary or middle
schools in Court Square and the only
zoned elementary school (P.S./I.S. 78) is
overcrowded,” she said. “Court Square
is like Dubai without the infrastructure.
Adding seats prevents the constant threat
of truncation of the 78 middle school and
busing of LIC students to Woodside.”
Th e Department of Education has suggested
removing the middle school seats at
P.S./I.S. 78 several times to make room for
more elementary and kindergarten classes
but parents pushed back against the proposal.
In the petition, the civic group outlined
the renovations needed for the
building including adding windows, additional
fl oors and outdoor space for children.
Th e space is also currently used as a
Department of Education Adult Learning
Center. A liquor store was slated to open
on the fi rst fl oor but residents and elected
offi cials asked that the State Liquor
Authority not grant the owners a liquor
license since the building is used as a
Barnes said that City Planning and the
SCA have not done an adequate job in siting
and constructing new schools to keep
up with population growth.
“Th ere has been no planning seemingly
for Court Square,” she said. “SCA has
been saying for 10 years that they’re looking
for sites but there has been no evidence
Representatives from the SCA and
DOE did attend an Education Panel
meeting hosted by CSCA on Feb. 15 and
announced that they were actively looking
for a new school site in the area since the
money for construction has been allocated.
But the civic group requested that the SCA
come back to discuss a timeline for building
elementary and middle schools in the
area and what the siting and construction
process typically looks like.
Th e Court Square area was re-zoned in
2001 to encourage commercial development.
Instead, residential developments
fl ooded the area. Of the 30 largest U.S. cities,
Long Island City saw the most apartments
constructed from 2010 through
2016. According to RentCafe, 12,533 new
apartments were built in Long Island City
during that time.
“Court Square needs a school desperately,”
said Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer.
“Th ere are thousands of new residents calling
Court Square home with no place to
send their children for elementary school.
We need schools and we need them now.”
Th e city has plans to build several new
elementary and middle schools in Hunters
Point but the civic group argues that those
plans are not enough.
So far, 573 people have signed the petition,
which was created on March 7. Once
the petition gains 1,000 signatures, CSCA
will reach out to local elected offi cials
such as Van Bramer and Assemblywoman
Catherine Nolan to discuss the viability of
A spokesperson for the SCA did not
respond to a request for comment.
Lottery now open for 81 aff ordable units at 10 Halletts Point in Astoria
BY ANGELA MATUA
apartments, 24 are two-bedroom
apartments and one is a three-bedroom
Th e fi rst of seven buildings at the
Other amenities include barbecue grills
and dining tables, a resident lounge, a
project in Astoria will open this summer
party room with a kitchen, “Tot Spot”
and the lottery for 81 aff ordable units in
children’s playroom and a parking garage.
the tower is now open.
Th e deadline to apply for housing
Th e building at 10 Halletts Point will
is May 7. To apply online, visit www.
include 405 units, two outdoor terraces,
nyc.gov/housingconnect. To request
a fi tness center with a yoga studio and a
an application by mail, send a self-addressed
envelope to 26-01 1st Street c/o
Of the 81 aff ordable units available, six
Th e Wavecrest Management Team, 87-14
are studio apartments, 50 are one-bedroom
116th St., Richmond Hill, NY 11418.
Photo courtesy of The Durst Organization
The lottery for 81 aff ordable housing units at 10 Hallets Point is offi cially open.
Photo via Google Maps
Long Island City residents are requesting that the city purchase a site to build a new elementary school.
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