Today’s news:

Broadway-Flushing may be landmarked

City Councilman Tony Avella (D-Bayside) recently joined with area homeowners and members of Landmarks to tour the district as part of an initial review by the commission to determine if the district is eligible for a landmark designation."To preserve the character and integrity of this unique neighborhood, we must protect it on a city level," Avella stated. "This neighborhood is a piece of our living history and we do not want to lose it to out-of-character development."Roughly 52 blocks containing 1,330 homes from 155th Street to 170th Street, including Bowne Park, are being considered for the exclusive designation.Marjorie Ferrigno, a founding member and two-time president of the Broadway-Flushing Homeowners Association, said residents have hoped for such a designation for 10 years."We looked at how to keep the builders from coming in and destroying the community we have here," she recalled. "All you need is one or two houses to stick out like a sore thumb and you lose the feeling of a community working together."Architecture in the area is uniquely different from the surrounding neighborhoods, she said. Homes were built in colonial and Tudor styles, giving a distinct feel to the neighborhood.She said being landmarked is like "being on the honor roll.""If you don't protect what you love, you're going to lose it," she said. "I'd love to see it happen as soon as possible."Avella, who also serves as the chairman of the Council Zoning Committee, has successfully rezoned several neighborhoods in northeast Queens, including Bayside, Whitestone and College Point. While Broadway-Flushing has not been officially rezoned, he said landmark status would crystallize the area in a safety net."While the rezoning was important, historic district designation offers even greater protection," he stated.Reach reporter Scott Sieber by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 138.

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