Astoria Times

Tuesday, June 30, 2015


Man robs bank and gets away in a wheelchair

Police from the 114th Precinct were searching for a man who robbed an Astoria bank in a wheelchair. The suspect entered the Santander Bank, located at 37-10 Broadway, Monday around 2 p.m. and passed a note to the teller demanding cash, police said. Comments (1).

Neighborhood record store set to open in Astoria

Neighborhood record stores have been in decline for over two decades, but one Astoria resident believes they’re ready for a comeback. That is why Javi Velasquez is ready to open HiFi Records at 23-19 Steinway St. early next month. According to Nielsen, U.S. album sales between January and March of this year were up 53 percent from the same period last year. Comment.

Simotas gets two bills passed

New York state has become the first in the nation to advance legislation to ensure prenatal care for all after lawmakers in both chambers passed a bill, last week to make pregnancy a qualifying event for enrollment in a health insurance plan. The legislation, introduced by state Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas (D-Astoria), followed a report by city Comptroller Scott Stringer that highlighted the need for expanded access to vital prenatal care. Comments (1).

Monday, June 29, 2015

Jackson Heights

Jacx Hts to hold vigil marking 25th anniversary of Julio Rivera’s murder

Jackson Heights residents will join City Councilman Daniel Dromm (D-Jackson Heights) and LGBTQ activists for a candlelight vigil Wednesday to mark the 25th anniversary of Julio Rivera’s anti-gay murder. The crowd will gather at the southwest corner of 78th Street and 37th Avenue, the very spot where the 29-year-old gay bartender was brutally killed by a three-man “hunting party” in the early morning of July 2, 1990. Comment.

DOT to build Astoria’s first Slow Zone and protect cyclists on Vernon Boulevard

Motorists in Astoria will have to slow down later this summer when the Department of Transportation begins construction of the neighborhood’s first Slow Zone. Comment.

Sunday, June 28, 2015


Dads reconnect with kids at Queens Zoo for Father’s Day

In celebration of Father’s Day, the city Department of Youth and Community Development brought hundreds of fathers who don’t have custody of their children together with their kids at the Queens Zoo on Saturday to reconnect over nature and animals. Comment.

This week’s featured advertisers

Friday, June 26, 2015


Queens’ gay councilmen welcome same-sex marriage decision

A Department of Transportation press event on the long-awaited redesign of 21st Street in Astoria was delayed by history Friday morning. City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) was on the phone telling his husband, Dan Hendrick, that the U.S. Supreme Court had just ruled 5-4 in favor of same-sex marriage nationwide, Comments (5).

Costa rallies Acropolis residents who are living without gas or hot water

Residents of the Acropolis Gardens co-op in Astoria are at their wits’ end, having lived without cooking gas and hot water for more than six weeks. Public Advocate Letitia James and City Councilman Costa Constantinides (D-Astoria) joined many tenants Monday outside their garden apartments on Ditmars Boulevard and 33rd Street to call on the complex’s management company to make the necessary repairs to restore gas service. Comment.

Thursday, June 25, 2015


‘House Party’ turns 25, made two Queens kids stars

The Museum of the Moving Image will present a 25th anniversary screening of “House Party,” the hip hop comedy cult classic film that catapulted the rap duo Kid ’n Play to fame in 1990, Friday night at 7 p.m. Christopher “Kid” Reid and Christopher “Play” Martin are hoping to take part, via Skype from Las Vegas, in a discussion with members of the cast and crew after the screening. Comment.
Hunters Point

Extraordinary security in store for 4th of July fireworks in Hunters Point

Hunters Point residents in Long Island City will be subjected to heavy security July 4 when more than 50,000 spectators are expected to watch the Macy’s fireworks along the waterfront. Hunters Point South Park will be closed to the public so that NBC can use it as the base for its national broadcast while Gantry Plaza State Park remains open, Comment.
Long Island City

LIC Summit discusses changing landscape of dynamic neighborhood

Several hundred business leaders, city and state officials, residents and stakeholders gathered Tuesday at the Museum of the Moving Image for the 2nd annual LIC Summit to hear panel discussions on such issues as real estate, transportation, tourism and culture that shape the future of Long Island City. The unprecedented growth of the neighborhood dominated conversation. Comment.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Jackson Heights

Three 9/11 victims memorialized by neighbors

Residents of a neighborhood that straddles the Jackson Heights and East Elmhurst border came together Saturday to honor three of their own who perished at the World Trade Center during the 9/11 attacks. They were joined by elected officials, police officers, firefighters and a motorcycle club for the unveiling and dedication of a Fallen Heroes Mural nearly 14 years later. Comment.

Monday, June 22, 2015


108th Precinct commander praises his cops for drug bust

The commander of the 108th Precinct in Long Island City is heaping praise on two of his officers for a big drug bust in Sunnyside. Comment.

Sunday, June 21, 2015


Astoria man found dead with several stab wounds: NYPD

A 54-year-old Astoria man was found dead in his apartment by police early Saturday morning, the NYPD said. Comment.
Long Island City

DOT took public parking spaces and Van Bramer wants them back

Dozens of angry Court Square residents joined City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) to call on the Department of Transportation to restore nearly 190 public parking permits that were withdrawn from the neighborhood. After a policy change, DOT officials significantly decreased the number of monthly parking permits and began using the public spaces to house agency vehicles and materials. Comment.

Student artists LeAp into activism with work

Students from two Queens middle schools recently unveiled tables in two city parks, each one painted with designs that bring a powerful message to life. Comment.

Friday, June 19, 2015


Kalief Browder remembered at Welling Court in Astoria

A mural depicting Kalief Browder, the young Bronx man whose harrowing ordeal on Rikers Island led to his suicide June 6, appeared one week later at Astoria’s Welling Court. Comment.

Patriotism on the march in Sunnyside’s 47th Flag Day Parade

A sea of red, white and blue followed two armored vehicles up Greenpoint Avenue Saturday as over 1,000 marchers, most of them children, took part in the 47th annual Sunnyside Flag Day Parade. While there are several Flag Day observations around the city, Sunnyside is the only neighborhood in the five boroughs with this type of parade each year. Comment.

Pavilion paint project a bigger job than expected

Workers at the New York State Pavilion began a $3 million beautification project Sunday applying the original “American Cheese” yellow paint to the weather-worn structure. Comment.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Long Island City

De Blasio and Bloomberg bond briefly over Cornell Tech Center

Mayor Bill de Blasio and former Mayor Michael Bloomberg made a rare joint appearance at Tuesday’s ground-breaking ceremony for Cornell University’s technology campus expansion on Roosevelt Island. The two chatted amicably and traded compliments during their speeches, their differences overshadowed by Cornell Tech’s arrival that will mean so much to the city’s economy. Comment.
Long Island City

5Pointz artists sue developer while August Martin project opens to the public

Attorneys for nine of the 5Pointz artists filed a federal lawsuit seeking punitive damages against developer Jerry Wolkoff and his son David for ordering workers to whitewash the graffiti mecca Nov. 19, 2013. Comments (1).

Gianaris bill to crack down on scofflaw drivers passes in state Senate

The New York State Senate passed legislation that would crack down on all drivers who kill or seriously injure others while driving with revoked, suspended or otherwise invalid licenses. The bill, introduced by state Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) following the tragic death of a Woodside schoolboy, would make such an incident a felony and is included in Mayor de Blasio’s Vision Zero agenda. Comments (3).

Wednesday, June 17, 2015


Vaughn College student charged as terror suspect

A Flushing student from Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology has been charged with conspiring to support a foreign terrorist organization after a federal investigation revealed that the terror suspect had been planning to attack various New York City landmarks on behalf of the Islamic State, according to the authorities. Comments (6).

Sign up for daily news e-mails!

Astoria Times archive

CNG: Community Newspaper Group