CB 7 chair blasts parking plan for Flushing Commons project

Developers hope work on the Flushing Commons development will begin in March 2014. Photo courtesy TDC Development
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Community leaders blasted new details about parking at the proposed Flushing Commons project that the developers unveiled at a Community Board 7 District Service Cabinet meeting last Thursday.

CB 7 Chairman Gene Kelty criticized the parking plan, which would charge $4 to parkers for four hours, $8 for up to 12 hours and $16 for 24 hours, saying it would encourage Manhattan commuters and do little to help Flushing residents and businesses.

“What’s going to stop a guy from bringing his car there at 8 a.m., going into Manhattan and then coming back at 7 p.m.?” asked Kelty.

“Absolutely nothing,” said Brian Collins, of Standard Parking, which will be running the parking lot. “The difference is $8 vs. $16.”

Collins contended the parking situation at the complex would be dynamic and that rates could be raised if it was found that people were abusing the system.

Kelty fired back that raising rates would hurt local parkers as well.

“Well, that’s a problem,” Kelty said. “Now you’ve created a monster for us.”

“That was not how it was presented to us at the community board,” Kelty added.

The mixed-use project, which would be built on Municipal Lot 1 at the corner of 39th Avenue and Union Street, was first proposed eight years ago and faced years of delays. It was approved by the City Council in 2010, before it ran into financial trouble. The developers, Rockefeller and TDC Development, which are part of a firm called F&T Group, now face a deadline to close on the property with the city by the end of December.

Michael Meyer, head of F&T Group, said they hope to close on the deal by Dec. 30, but if a deal is not reached, the developers will have to negotiate with the new mayoral administration.

Meyer also unveiled a scheme to cover phases of construction for the development at the meeting that would keep the parking lot’s 1,144 spaces in tact while the work goes on.

“It’s sort of a Rubik’s Cube,” Meyer said. “The principal advantage is it reduces the amount of construction at one time, thereby allowing us to maintain all the parking that was going to be displaced.”

The first thing to be built will be a four-level underground parking garage. Meyer said the lot’s surface will still be able to accommodate the existing 1,144 spaces, until the parking garage is finished. It will have 1,600 spaces.

If all goes according to plan, Meyer said preparation work to ready the site will begin in January and construction will begin in March.

Reach reporter Alex Robinson by e-mail at arobinson@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4566.

Updated 12:45 am, December 24, 2013
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Reader feedback

sophia from flushing says:
why build all those building , when its only gonna be Asians living in them..its because of them that flushing its cheap to live in ..i just don't understand where they get all this money ..maybe its from all the spas and only god know what go on in there.
Jan. 7, 2014, 8:21 pm
Amy from Flushing says:
thank Sophia for your racist insight into something you obviously do not understand. the cost of living as well as owning a business in flushing is very high, comparable to other major areas in the tristate area. Just because the businesses sell things at a lower price does not correlate to how much the residents and owners are living.
the people that make up flushing are one of the most hardworking and dedicated workers in the city and I dare you to find another community that is as concerned about their livelihood as those in this community especially with these changes.
Jan. 18, 2014, 10:51 am
Stuphia from Queens says:
Some one like sophia had never have a good pay job and she couldn't understand why Asian had money. Most of high pay job is Asian, like finance analyst or java programmer.
Feb. 10, 2014, 10:23 am
Stuphia from Queens says:
Good job, Amy.
People like sophia lack the ability to have the skill work on high pay job, and lack the ability to work hard. The only way she could think about money is from some where. Use you brain, or labor, that's where money come from.
Feb. 10, 2014, 10:27 am

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