Old-school pizzeria L’inizio opens on Vernon Blvd

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28 Responses to Old-school pizzeria L’inizio opens on Vernon Blvd

  1. Sonny L.

    Congratulations on a great soft open. Huge crowd, great success. Now if only the CB2 would catch up with the times.

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  2. Ray

    So so so disappointed the beautiful backyard is not open for use. Such a shame. I live in LIC overlooking The Creek and the Cave backyard and it's perfectly fine (and I'm a pretty uptight individual)! Its management strictly enforces the hours of usage for the backyard and it's not a big deal AT ALL -- I do not understand this community board whatsoever. It just continues to make me really sad.

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  3. r185

    1) Congratulations and welcome.
    2)CB 2 are a bunch of weak kneed a-holes.

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  4. Carla

    Picked up our pie to go and we're not disappointed. Wishing you a great success.

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  5. mike

    i will check it out for a slice

    old school nyc pizzeria?

    wonder if anyone in there knows what a one & one is?

    hopefully it's good i will not have to go to Greenpoint for my pizza fix

    maybe that crappy place down the block with the terrible pizza

    will step up his game or go away

    that guy totally missed the boat could have renovated that place a little

    and made some better pizza and food

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  6. Anonymous

    $$ broker $$ pizza.

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  7. Thank the Pizza Gods

    Mike, what's a one & one? I've been eating NYC pizza for many years and never heard of it.

    If L'inzio can turn out a solid, no-nonsense/yuppie BS old-fashioned slice like we used to get, it will be my new temple.

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  8. mel

    Do they serve beer and wine?

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  9. Funkybutt

    Stopped by yesterday and tried 3 different slices. Very disappointed. Pizza looks great but it was very very bland. Nothing special. I will go back though.
    And about the CB 2 - there's is actually one person there that opposes to everything. A very very pathetic sad fun-blocker person. We, the long time residents, know who he is...

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  10. Will give them time

    Tried to give L'inzios a shot. Walked in 2 times since they have been open to try them out. It is abundantly clear that no one employed there has ever run a restaurant. 5 people standing behind the counter without any direction/assigned jobs, and a line of customers that has no order, no beginning or end.

    I noticed several people getting frustrated with the lack of understanding as to where the end of the line was, and after waiting 10 mins or so on what they thought was the end of the line, they were told they were wrong and to get on the other end of that line - clearly the majority of those folks walked out.

    All that is needed is to give each of those employees a set job - one mans the register, another to get the order from the customer, another to pull the pizza from the oven, another to serve, and then only one is left to stand behind the counter walking in circles and appearing useless.

    Will try again, but order is necessary to run a successful business.

    Also - the seasoned restauranteur never makes the same mistake twice (if you sell out of dough on one night, you make more for the night after so it doesn't happen again).

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  11. r185

    Funkybutt, You mean William Garrett, right? He's got this pathological drive to silence LIC all because he bought a building on a commercial street to live in, and then discovered that there were businesses next door!

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  12. Lic fan

    Stopped by Sunday afternoon to a sign on the door: "Closed Today", not off to a great start. Hope they get their act together soon. Ended up at Juniors, nothing special but good old style NY pizza.

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  13. Sunny D

    So because they're closed, they're not off to a good start? A lot of restaurants close 1 day a week.

    Manetta's is closed on Mondays, so is El Ay Si.

    I thought the pizza was great. Everyone has different taste. Perhaps they're working out some kinks with organization, but I've experienced that with EVERY single new restaurant in LIC.

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  14. That70sManinLIC

    Quite frankly, these people haven't a clue as to what good old NY pizza is. First off, I get a kick out of these modern-day hipsters, children of 8-s yuppies, who think they can commodify the past to serve it to idiots who fork over lots of money, then drive up the price of things, thus forcing ordinary people like myself out of nieghborhoods in NYC (called gentrification, IT MUST STOP! We need to Stick it to the Man!) It would be a miracle if a place opened up around here that offered real good old pizza at an affordable price, 70s style, that is, if anyone still remembers what a big slice tasked like in the good old 70s (I remember for sure!). In the meantime, this place will NEVER get my business, aside from the 2 measley garlic knots I got for 2.17 ugh! And this 70s Man will never patronize any gentrified outlet serving worthless robots that are another slave to the Man. Dig it?!

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  15. 70s Prices

    No offense, but the dream for pizza (good or bad) at 70s prices is just that, a dream.

    And it has NOTHING to do with the people that are running the restaurant, or when or where they grew up and if their parents were or were not yuppies.

    It has to do with the greedy landlords who think they deserve more profit than anyone else and drive up rent prices to the point where either the cost of goods must increase, or the business owner is forced to move.

    I have seen a lot of restaurants open here, and in manhattan, and elsewhere. All openings have minor hiccups, but when it is apparent to someone who has never worked the restaurant industry, that the restaurant owners are in the same boat... thats not a minor hiccup, that's a severe lack of pre-planning, research and set up.

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  16. Larry

    Great Pizza, good atmosphere, awesome people behind and on the other side of the counter.
    Let's all be happy for a great place to eat and hang out in the community!
    Cheers!!

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  17. doc

    CB 2 continues it 's extortion of local businesses. Do what we want or we'll block the license you legally are entitled to. Vote these a-holes out.

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  18. Gwen

    Went for a nice slice of cheese pizza - literally told
    To go to back of the room or go
    Elsewhere. So odd and very off putting.

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  19. pleased

    Had lunch there with my boyfriend on Thursday. Best pizza in the neighborhood. I didn't experience any rudeness at all. It has a family vibe and I can tell the staff is mostly friends or family of the owner because that's who he trusts. It's understandable. I would do the same thing if it were my first restaurant. In time he will learn that he needs to put an experienced manager behind the counter.

    I think Gwen is a liar. There's no way anyone who works there would ever say that to a customer. It sounds like she's hating on him because he wants to open his yard. Pathetic!

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  20. del

    Visited L'inzinio last night trying to get a slice for myself and my wife. No one would serve me. When I asked the two 'ladies' at the till for my request, they told me to get back in the non-existent line. You do realize that I carry cash and the desire to support local business right? Also, two regular slices of cheese or 'nanna' slices should take little to no time at all. I came in, saw what I wanted and asked for it. The reply? Just tell the cook. What cook? There was no one there. You had your chance to engage me with a hello and sure. What I got was 'I'd rather not' and "my nails are better than yours'.
    I have no problem sharing with potential customers that the 'customer service' is dreadful at best. It took me literally a second to decide that I will never spend a cent in L'inzinio, and I recommend a person try something else. Literally, anything else.

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  21. r185

    How about we all give them time to hit their stride? This happens in most restaurants. Employees, internal systems, staff training, food, management, etc. all go through varying lengths of breaking in time. What would anyone feel if your first day or weeks on a new job were open to public review and comment?

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  22. Will give them time

    There are "we are new and need some time" mistakes, and then there are "we are new and have clearly never done this before, ever" mistakes.

    If I were on a new job making the second kind of mistakes, I'd be dismissed fairly quickly.

    Here's hoping they find an actual restauranteur to help them move from the second kind of mistakes, and fast.

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  23. Leave the guy alone

    For Christ sake, they make pizza, they aren't performing brain surgery. My God, why are you giving this business such a hard time? It's no wonder the retail environment in LIC is so hazardous -- they have to serve you people! I wouldn't want you sitting in my backyard, so maybe it's a blessing in disguise that CB2 won't allow him to use his garden.

    Sometimes things don't go exactly the way you anticipate -- did you ever imagine that? I'm sure the place just needs to figure out the right pacing for the business. You're going to crucify the guy because he hasn't worked out the perfect timing to serve you a friggin' slice of pizza? Are you kidding me???

    I would pass on one piece of advice to the owner. I would urge him to consider the fact that an evidently large number of their customers are know it all, pain in the A$$es. Suck it up, buddy -- you're stuck with them.

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  24. yoursource

    Pizza was good. I wouldn't go nuts raving about it but I would definitely go back. They really need to get their act together in terms of service and knowledge of how to run a restaurant. Tons of people behind the counter and every single one was disorganized. Normally I'd blame this on the soft opening and everyone just starting out but these people didn't seem like they had any restaurant experience at all. A bit worrisome. The staff wasn't very polite either.

    And I say knowledge because when I asked for a cinque terre pie and pronounced cinque correctly, twice, the girl had no idea what I was talking about. Then she replied: "Oh, you mean cinque" and butchered it in a tone that was correcting me. Come on.

    The no backyard open is typical CB2 and is absolutely absurd.

    Oh and "old-school NYC pizzeria" is one of the funniest things I've read in a while. This is as fancy pants/yuppy as it gets. Not old school or NY style in any way shape or form but still good pizza.

    YourSource

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  25. mike

    fyi

    a 1 &1 is a regular slice and a Sicilian slice

    any self respecting ny'er knows this

    walked in this place and saw the writing on the wall

    totally not for me

    I will continue to go to Italy pizza in greenpoint on Manhattan ave

    great pie for $15

    once again a lic business is totally run by amateurs

    when did this hood turn into murray hill east?

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  26. Mel

    Pizza was good and the rice ball as well, yummy!
    I will definately go back and love the atmosphere as well
    But old school it ain't. Polito's in Astoria is old school!

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  27. Kim

    I want to love this place, and the pizza is good, but what is going on with the service? I have to agree with some of the other posters, that it seems no one knows what they should be doing behind the counter. I came in and no one was waiting in line. I stood in front of the pizzas and not one of the four people behind the glass helped me. I said hi to one of them, and he ignored me. I then walked over to the woman at the register, and saw the post-it that said that you could only order whole pies there, and walked back. I finally flagged someone down and ordered my slices. When I went to pay, the woman behind the register didn't even look up, say thank you, nothing. Not even the most minimal courtesy. It wasn't even busy! It's early and I'll give it a couple more chances, but seriously guys, it's a casual pizzeria, they should have it a bit more together.

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Owner of ‘I Love Kickboxing LIC’ seeks permit, aims to open before June
45-45 Center Blvd

45-45 Center Blvd

Oct. 23, By Christian Murray

Representatives of “I Love Kick Boxing LIC,” who aim to open a facility on the ground floor at 45-45 Center Boulevard, went before Community Board 2 last week seeking a “physical cultural establishment” permit as part of their quest to open in the first or second quarter next year.

New York City requires all health clubs, gyms or spas to obtain the permit in order to make sure that massage parlors or other undesirable establishments don’t open.

Frederick Becker, the attorney representing I Love Kick Boxing LIC, said the venue will focus primarily on physical fitness.

He said the 2,800-square foot facility would essentially be like “aerobics on steroids.”

Becker said the facility will be part of a well established franchise (see corporate website). There are branches throughout the US, including four in Queens.

The work outs, according to the corporate Facebook page, typically involve punching and kicking bags. The website said that participants learn techniques used by pro fighters like jabs, crosses, hooks, roundhouse kicks and front kicks, according to the corporate website. It also involves a series of exercises.

The facility would not be a venue where sparring or fights take place as there are no plans for a ring, according to Becker. Its focus is on fitness, conditioning and weight loss.

Becker said that the owner plans is to operate between 6 am and 10 pm (Mon-Friday) and 7am to 2 pm on weekends.

He said that the owner is working with the landlord and acoustic engineers to protect the residents from noise.

The facility will primarily provide classes—catering to groups of about 30 people. Becker said that each class is about 45-50 minutes long.

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Communitea, long-time Vernon Blvd coffee shop, is closing

Communitea_BldgOct. 22, By Christian Murray

Communitea, the long-time coffee shop located at 47-02 Vernon Blvd, announced on Facebook Monday that it is closing.

The owners said that the coffee shop will be closing this Sunday since they had difficultly negotiating a new lease.

“We thank you for a wonderful decade of support and friendship. It has been our pleasure to be a part of this community and we are grateful for the opportunity to make so many amazing friends,” the owners wrote.

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Red-hot LIC rental market shows signs of cooling down

Linc-LICOct. 20, By Christian Murray

The upward trajectory of the Long Island City rental market is beginning to show signs that it is tapering off, with rental prices down in the third quarter compared to the second.

The cool down was also evident on a year-over-year basis with rents up only slightly compared to 3Q 2013, according to a recent report.

Modern Spaces, a LIC-based real estate firm, reported that rental prices for luxury apartments dipped by about 5 percent on average in the third quarter compared to the second. For instance, the rent charged for a luxury studio was $2,369 in 3Q 2014, down from $2,558 in the second quarter (see rental figures below). Meanwhile, the rent for a one bedroom luxury unit dropped from $3,158 to $3,013 over that period.

“The past quarter we are really seeing the rental market stabilizing and leveling out,” said Eric Benaim, the CEO of Modern Spaces, in a statement. “With all the new projects that have come online this year, competition between buildings is becoming increasingly apparent and the prices of rentals in the area have started to adjust.”

This year alone, TF Cornerstone began leasing its sixth and final luxury building – 46-10 Center B lvd—which is comprised of 584 units. Meanwhile, Rockrose announced in August that it had fully leased its 709-unit luxury building called Linc LIC.

Rockrose has started construction on a 50 story mixed-used development at 43-25 Hunter Street, which will include 974 rental units. That should be completed by 2017.

Despite the recent slowdown, on a year-over-year basis luxury rentals were up about 4 percent, according to the report. In 3Q 2013, a luxury studio was renting for $2,320 (compared to $2,369 in 3Q14)—while a luxury one bedroom for $2,901 (compared to $3,013 in 3Q14). Furthermore, a 2 bedroom in 3Q 2013 went for $4,106, while in 3Q 2014 it fetched $4,134.

The big firms such as TF Cornerstone and Rockrose are still not offering much in the way of incentives. It is rare to find one month free rent, although the developers will cover the cost of the brokerage fee.

q314

3Q13

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No. 7 train weekend service to be cut for 5 weekends this fall

7subway1Oct. 17, Staff Report

The MTA has announced that the No. 7 train will be down between Times Square and Queensboro Plaza for five weekends this fall.

In addition, No. 7 train service will be reduced between 74th Street Broadway and Queensboro Plaza.

The cuts begin this weekend, with service down from Saturday (Oct. 18) at 2 am through Monday (Oct 20) at 5 am.

The cuts will also take place on the following weekends—starting at 11:30pm through Monday at 5am.

Oct 24-27

Nov. 7-10

Nov 14-17

Nov. 21-24

The MTA said that it needs to work on weekends in order to complete its capital improvements. These include new signal systems, track replacement and Sandy recovery work.

The MTA said that it will be offering free shuttle buses between Vernon Blvd/Jackson Ave. and Queensboro Plaza during the shutdown.

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Parking costs might rise in LIC, as DOT has preliminary plans to introduce ‘Park Smart’

metersOct. 17, By Christian Murray

Representatives from the Department of Transportation attended a Community Board 2 meeting last week and introduced a preliminary plan to introduce “Park Smart”– a program that aims to free up parking spaces–in Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City.

The program attempts to reduce the time it takes for motorists to find parking in business districts– by changing meter rates, extending park hours and modifying commercial parking zones.

The program was first introduced in Queens in 2013, with the implementation of a pilot program in Jackson Heights.

The program typically focuses on changing the meter rates to encourage short-term parking through “progressive” rates.

For instance on certain streets in Jackson Heights, it now costs 50 cents to park for 30 minutes, $1:50 for an hour, $2:50 for 90 minutes and $4 for 2 hours.

However, in some cases, the parking period has been extended on certain streets. For instance, one hour limits have been increased to two.

Park Smart typically aims to change the commercial parking and delivery zones. “Early Morning Delivery Zones” are often established to provide loading space before the meters turn on at 10 a.m., and “Paid Commercial Parking Zones” reserve daytime metered spaces for commercial uses.

The Department of Transportation will not introduce the system unless business owners opt into the program. The DOT representatives told the Community Board 2 that it will reach out to Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District, the Long Island City Partnership and Woodside on the Move to get their feedback. Those groups are likely to conduct a survey of local businesses to get their feedback.

Park Smart is not a program that typically goes into effect overnight as the DOT typically evaluates each street to determine whether the parking times and rates need to be modified.

Furthermore it is typically implemented as a pilot program before becoming permanent.

The programs were made permanent in Park Slope and Greenwich Village, after they were deemed effective, according to the DOT.

However, the pilot program on Madison Avenue and East 86th Street was brought to a halt after it was viewed as being ineffective, according to published reports.

For more information on Park Smart click here

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Police seek man who allegedly punched 65-year-old in face
suspect

suspect

Oct. 17, Staff Report

The police are looking to locate a suspect who allegedly punched a 65-year-old man in the face last month.

The suspect allegedly struck the man at ENC Market, located at 5 Court Square, after he asked the victim for the phone number to a car service..

The 65-year-old victim said that he not have a phone number and carried on with his business.

The suspect was upset and then punched the suspect in the face causing swelling to his left cheek and eye.

The incident occurred on Sept. 22 at 10:50 pm.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS.

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LIC’s underground stations now have Wifi

Vernonirtstairlar
Oct. 16, By Michael Florio

The MTA announced today that it had completed Phase II of its seven-phase plan to bring WiFi service to all 277 underground stations in New York City.

The second phase has brought WiFi service to an additional 11 Manhattan and 29 Queens stations–including several in Long Island City and Astoria. The total number of underground stations with WiFi service has now reached 76.

Phase II provides WiFi service to the underground stations in Long Island City and Astoria.

The Vernon/Jackson and Hunters Point Ave. stations are now covered by Phase II, as well as Grand Central and 42nd Bryant Park, which are key stations for 7 train riders. Times Square was part of phase I.

The Court Square station (which caters to the E, G, M and 7) was also added under the wireless plan.

Astoria residents who take the R train will also receive WiFi service. The service—under Phase II—is now available at the Queens Plaza, 36th Street, 46th Street and Steinway Street stations.

“Subway riders will now always be connected with our WiFi,” said Bill Bayne, CEO of Transit Wireless, which has partnered with the MTA. “We as consumers expect to be connected 24/7 no matter where we are.”

The WiFi, which provides voice and data service, is also viewed as increasing public safety—since people will be able to make calls from these station.

“Whether you’re checking your email, calling your kids or looking for emergency assistance, wireless service will bring the conveniences we’re used to above ground into the subway system,” MTA Chairman Thomas Prendergast said.

“This is a win for the riders in my district and all over the city,” said Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer. “Riders will now get the convenient and comfortable ride that they look for every day.”

Phase three will bring WiFi to another 105 stations and is expected to be completed by spring 2015.

The entire seven-phase project will cost upwards of $300 million.

Phase 1 Phase 2 Stations

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Application period for Hunters Point South has begun

Hunters Point South buildingOct. 15, By Christian Murray

The application period for the apartments at the Hunters Point South Development went live today.

The application forms can be filled out on line at New York Housing Connect  (https://a806-housingconnect.nyc.gov/nyclottery/lottery.html#home), which requires applicants to provide details such as their income and apartment sought.

Those interested have until December 15 to submit an application.

There are 925 apartments up for grabs, with 186 apartments available to those applicants who fall into the “low income” bracket. To qualify as low income, an applicant seeking a studio cannot make more than $30,000—while a family seeking a 3 bedroom unit must earn less than $50,000 per year.

For those who qualify for the “low income” bracket, the rents would range in price from $494 per month for a studio to as high as $959 for a three bedroom.

However, the limits are significantly higher for the 738 “moderate income” apartments on offer. The maximum income permitted to be eligible for a studio is a little over $130,000, while the maximum household income for a 3 bedroom unit is about $225,000.

The rents for “moderate income” earners will range from $1,561-$1997 for a studio, $1,965-2,509 for a one bedroom, $2,366-$3,300 for a 2 bedroom and $2,729-$4,346 for a three bedroom.

Preference will be given to applicants who live within the Community Board 2 district, which covers Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City.

affordablerents

affordablehousingmoderate income

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Court Square: Planned Parenthood to break ground on first Queens facility
Rendering

Rendering

By Michael Florio

Planned Parenthood of New York City (PPNYC) will be breaking ground Thursday on its first healthcare center in Queens.

The new center is being constructed in the Court Square section of Long Island City, at 21-41 45th Road. It is expected to open in 2015.

The 14,000-square-foot facility center, like other centers, will offer abortions, breast and cervical cancer screenings, birth control, STD testing and treatment, and routine gynecological exams.

Planned Parenthood, a non-profit center, anticipates that it will serve 17,500 patients annually at the location.

In a statement, PPNYC said that thousands of Queens patients have to travel to other boroughs to receive its services.

“The new health center will strengthen our ability to provide Queens residents with the essential reproductive health care services they need,” said Joan Malin, President and CEO of PPNYC.

Planned Parenthood estimates that one in five women in Queens do not have health insurance.

Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer who allocated $750,000 of city funds to help bring the Long Island City facility to the area, said earlier this year that it was important to bring essential “healthcare for women and all new Yorkers” to Queens.

Malin said PPNYC selected this location because Court Square is accessible to subway lines.

Meanwhile, Life News, a news site catering toward the pro-life movement, was less than happy about the announcement. “Forty percent of Unborn Babies in New York City are Aborted, Planned Parenthood Wants More,” referring to the new facility.

The abortion rate in New York City has been falling. The Health Department reported that in 2012, 38 percent of viable pregnancies ended in “induced terminations.”

21-45 45th Road, Court Square

21-45 45th Road, Court Square

 

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More Headlines

LIC’s underground stations now have Wifi
Vernonirtstairlar Oct. 16, By Michael Florio The MTA announced today that it had completed Phase II of its seven-phase plan to bring WiFi service to all 277 underground stations in New York City. The second phase has brought WiFi service to an additional 11 Manhattan and 29 Queens stations--including several in Long Island City and Astoria. The total number of underground stations with WiFi service has now reached 76. Phase II provides WiFi service to the underground stations in Long Island City and Astoria. The Vernon/Jackson and Hunters Point Ave. stations are now covered by Phase II, as well as Grand Central and 42nd Bryant Park, which are key stations for 7 train riders. Times Square was part of phase I. The Court Square station (which caters to the E, G, M and 7) was also added under the wireless plan. Astoria residents who take the R train will also receive WiFi service. The service—under Phase II—is now available at the Queens Plaza, 36th Street, 46th Street and Steinway Street stations. "Subway riders will now always be connected with our WiFi," said Bill Bayne, CEO of Transit Wireless, which has partnered with the MTA. "We as consumers expect to be connected 24/7 no matter where we are.” The WiFi, which provides voice and data service, is also viewed as increasing public safety—since people will be able to make calls from these station. “Whether you’re checking your email, calling your kids or looking for emergency assistance, wireless service will bring the conveniences we’re used to above ground into the subway system," MTA Chairman Thomas Prendergast said. “This is a win for the riders in my district and all over the city,” said Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer. “Riders will now get the convenient and comfortable ride that they look for every day.” Phase three will bring WiFi to another 105 stations and is expected to be completed by spring 2015. The entire seven-phase project will cost upwards of $300 million.

Phase 1 Phase 2 Stations

Application period for Hunters Point South has begun
Hunters Point South buildingOct. 15, By Christian Murray The application period for the apartments at the Hunters Point South Development went live today. The application forms can be filled out on line at New York Housing Connect  (https://a806-housingconnect.nyc.gov/nyclottery/lottery.html#home), which requires applicants to provide details such as their income and apartment sought. Those interested have until December 15 to submit an application. There are 925 apartments up for grabs, with 186 apartments available to those applicants who fall into the “low income” bracket. To qualify as low income, an applicant seeking a studio cannot make more than $30,000—while a family seeking a 3 bedroom unit must earn less than $50,000 per year. For those who qualify for the “low income” bracket, the rents would range in price from $494 per month for a studio to as high as $959 for a three bedroom. However, the limits are significantly higher for the 738 “moderate income” apartments on offer. The maximum income permitted to be eligible for a studio is a little over $130,000, while the maximum household income for a 3 bedroom unit is about $225,000. The rents for “moderate income” earners will range from $1,561-$1997 for a studio, $1,965-2,509 for a one bedroom, $2,366-$3,300 for a 2 bedroom and $2,729-$4,346 for a three bedroom. Preference will be given to applicants who live within the Community Board 2 district, which covers Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City. affordablerents affordablehousingmoderate income
Court Square: Planned Parenthood to break ground on first Queens facility
Rendering

Rendering

By Michael Florio Planned Parenthood of New York City (PPNYC) will be breaking ground Thursday on its first healthcare center in Queens. The new center is being constructed in the Court Square section of Long Island City, at 21-41 45th Road. It is expected to open in 2015. The 14,000-square-foot facility center, like other centers, will offer abortions, breast and cervical cancer screenings, birth control, STD testing and treatment, and routine gynecological exams. Planned Parenthood, a non-profit center, anticipates that it will serve 17,500 patients annually at the location. In a statement, PPNYC said that thousands of Queens patients have to travel to other boroughs to receive its services. “The new health center will strengthen our ability to provide Queens residents with the essential reproductive health care services they need,” said Joan Malin, President and CEO of PPNYC. Planned Parenthood estimates that one in five women in Queens do not have health insurance. Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer who allocated $750,000 of city funds to help bring the Long Island City facility to the area, said earlier this year that it was important to bring essential “healthcare for women and all new Yorkers” to Queens. Malin said PPNYC selected this location because Court Square is accessible to subway lines. Meanwhile, Life News, a news site catering toward the pro-life movement, was less than happy about the announcement. “Forty percent of Unborn Babies in New York City are Aborted, Planned Parenthood Wants More,” referring to the new facility. The abortion rate in New York City has been falling. The Health Department reported that in 2012, 38 percent of viable pregnancies ended in “induced terminations.”
21-45 45th Road, Court Square

21-45 45th Road, Court Square

 
8 people isolated — and later cleared–after suspicious powder discovered in LIC building
ambulance-e1412871498173Oct. 14, By Michael Florio (Update: 7:30 pm) A suspicious white powder was discovered this morning at the headquarters of the New York City Housing Authority in Long Island City this morning. Eight people were initially isolated by the FDNY-- but they were later cleared. The powder was discovered on the fourth floor of the 23-02 49th Avenue building, around 10:50 am, inside a letter that was opened in the mail room, according to a NYPD spokesperson. The Department of Environmental Protection is currently testing the powder to identify what it is but the NYPD said it was unlikely to be hazardous. There were no injuries, the NYPD said, and the building was not evacuated.  
Cathy Nolan’s opponent for Assembly a long shot
JohnKwilsonOct. 13, By Christian Murray This November’s election for Assembly District 37 is practically a formality. Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan (D), who has been in office representing a large portion of Western Queens since 1984, faces a contender who has run against her twice before and was thumped each time. Nolan has name recognition, the benefit of incumbency, strong party backing and has raised more than $130,000 in campaign funds since 2010 (Friends of Catherine Nolan and Nolan for Assembly). She has moved up the ranks over the years, where she has chaired the Banking as well as Labor committees. She is currently the chair of the Education Committee. Meanwhile, her challenger John K. Wilson, a Sunnyside barman/actor, has raised $10,000 in campaign funds (Committee to elect John K Wilson) since 2010 and has virtually no name recognition. His best effort against Nolan came in 2010 when he generated 16% of the vote, after he ran a confrontational—and at times—negative campaign (see website). Wilson said he is running in order to introduce term limits and bring an end to the Queens Democratic machine. “There is too much power in too few hands,” he said. “Six years in office should be the limit,” Wilson said. “I want to put an end to career politicians.” “The longer someone is in power the less work they do for the people,” he said. “They take the job for granted and focus on moving up within the party.” Wilson, who ran as a Republican in his past two campaigns, is running for office as a Libertarian this year. He switched parties, he said, so people would listen to his positions. “When I ran as a Republican [in 2010 and 2012], people would shut the door in my face and not even listen to my ideas,” he said. “People associate you as Dick Cheney, which is not the case. This time, some people might tell me they are Cathy [Nolan] supporters but at least they will listen to me.” His platform is based around free market economics. He said businesses are over regulated, over taxed and subject to too much bureaucracy. “New York State is very unfriendly to business and that is why many are leaving to go to other states.” He cited the battle in Long Island City over the use of back yard space as an example of unnecessary bureaucracy. “Local restaurants hire people, want to do what is right by the community and are losing revenue,” he said. “These owners don’t want to be bad neighbors,” he said. “It is not in their interest to have loud noise at night. Why not a compromise?” He said that he opposes the concept of affordable housing, which he views as a “buzzword” to make it appear as though elected officials are “helping the little people.” He said the term “affordable” has never been defined and believes that market forces are the answer. Wilson, who supports gay marriage and is pro-choice, said that he wants the number of charter schools to be expanded. He said charter schools benefit poor and minority students and many parents want to send their children to these schools since they provide the best chance these children have for success. He also said that the state needs to cut spending and focus more on reducing taxes."Lower taxes equal more jobs," he said. Most of all, Wilson said that voters need a choice come Election Day (Nov. 4) and said it is disappointing that many legislators are running unopposed. “Without a choice we enter into Soviet style government,” he said.
New French bakery just days away from opening
cafeshopOct. 10, By Christian Murray A new French bakery is about to open in Hunters Point. Cannelle Patisserie, a popular French bakery that opened in Jackson Heights more than six years ago, will be opening in the next week to 10 days. The bakery, which is located on the ground floor of The Maximilian building at 5-11 47th Ave, will offer cakes, pastries, macaroons, coffee and sandwiches—much like its Jackson Heights location, said co-owner Jean-Claude Perennou. The new bakery has space for 25 seats—and Perennou has plans to offer sidewalk seating next summer. Perennou, a French native who has lived in the Hunters Point for the past 18 months, has plenty of industry experience. Prior to opening Cannelle Patisserie, Perennou was a pastry chef at the Waldorf Astoria for more than a decade—and has worked at several restaurants in New York and Paris. He attended Le Paraclet, a culinary school in France. Perennou said he and his business partner wanted to expand into Hunters Point since there is no other French bakery in the neighborhood and that they would be filling a niche. Furthermore, he said, the new bakery would not be too far from the Jackson Heights location, so they could travel back and forth with relative ease. Perennou said he looks forward to having a location where people will be able walk to the store. Currently, he said, most people have to drive to get to the Jackson Heights bakery. “We are looking forward to opening in LIC and are eager to start,” he said.
Jean Claude

Jean Claude Perennou

Two robbed in Murray Playground last month, police search for suspects
LICBAC Oct. 9, By Michael Florio The police are searching for two men wanted in connection with a gun point robbery that took place in Murray Playground (45th Ave and 21st Street) last month. The two suspects entered the park at about 2:10 am Monday, Sept. 15, and approached a 22-year-old male and 22-year-old female. They displayed a firearm and demanded money. The suspects removed a Samsung Galaxy cellular phone, a debit card, and $5 in cash from the male victim, and removed an iPhone and debit card from the female victim. The suspects are both described as black males. The police have released a photo of one of the suspects who using the male victim's debit card at a Bank of America ATM, located at 2680 Broadway in Manhattan. Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).  
Van Bramer differs with Community Board Chair over the development of Sunnyside Yards
Sunnyside_Yard_East_jehOct. 8, By Christian Murray Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer said today that he is firmly opposed to building over the Sunnyside Yards. Van Bramer made the statement in response to Community Board 2 Chairman Joe Conley’s call last Thursday for a study to determine whether it would be feasible to build over a section of the yards, which consists of acres of land covered by railroad tracks. Conley said at the monthly Community Board 2 meeting that the Sunnyside Yards could be used to build more affordable housing. “We should look at it with the possibility of creating a community…with affordable housing, market rate housing and retail,” Conley said. Conley called on the board to give him permission to send a letter to the Queens Borough President’s office requesting a study of the area. The board complied. The letter, however, alarmed several people who fear over development—with some claiming that the infrastructure is overstretched as it is. Van Bramer said the community is not calling for the development of the Sunnyside Yards. He said people are more concerned about school overcrowding, transportation issues and other problems that actually stem from development. “My office is in the business of receiving hundreds of letters and speaking to people about important issues all the time,” Van Bramer said. “Not one person has come to me and said ‘you should deck over the Sunnyside Yards and build housing.” Several Community Board 2 members said after last Thursday’s meeting that they were caught by surprise by Conley’s request. “I’m opposed to the concept of decking [building] over the Sunnyside Yards,” Van Bramer said. “The idea gets floated whenever there is an economic boom…but I think it would be bad for the surrounding community.” Van Bramer, as councilman, has a big role to play in terms of land use decisions such as these. All significant zoning changes go through the city council and it is typically the elected official in a given district that makes the call. Van Bramer was unsure how the idea surfaced in the first place.
Jimmy Van Bramer

Jimmy Van Bramer

Conley said that the Sunnyside Yards—which go through Long Island City and Sunnyside--are owned by government agencies. Therefore, this provides the community with an opportunity to negotiate with developers as to the number of affordable units that could be built. “Jackson Avenue and 21st Street would be our jumping off point,” Conley said, adding that the study would then look toward Thomson Avenue and Queens Plaza. Van Bramer said that he too is in favor of affordable housing. However, he said, “Density is appropriate in some places and not others. I, for one, believe Sunnyside and Astoria are great low-density neighborhoods that should remain so.” Conley told the Daily News Tuesday that the Sunnyside Yards also divide the neighborhoods and indicated that the housing would draw them closer. “Right now you have this scar that runs down the community,” he told the News. Van Bramer disagreed with this view. “I wouldn’t characterize these neighborhoods as having a scar running through them…and I don’t believe the neighborhoods are unreachable.”  
Police seek help in locating serial bank robber, suspect allegedly hit HSBC bank in LIC in 2012
Oct. 8, By Christian Murray suspect Call him the 21st Century version of Willie Sutton or John Dillinger. The police are searching for a man who has robbed eight Queens banks—and attempted to rob two others—in the past 2 1/2 years. The banks have been scattered throughout the borough—covering Jackson Heights, Middle Village, Long Island City, Astoria, Flushing, East Elmhurst and Sunnyside. In total, the suspect has taken in about $50,000. One of the robberies occurred at the HSBC Bank branch at 22-15 43rd Avenue, where the suspect approached a teller and passed a note—before fleeing with $8,680 in cash. That incident occurred on August 20, 2012. The suspect’s modus operandi has been to enter a bank, pass a note and—on four occasions—display a firmarm. He also tends to hold a mobile phone up against his ear. No injuries have resulted from his spree. The suspect (see photo) is believed to be between 30 and 35 years old, approximately 6-feet-tall and weighing about 200 pounds. Police said he was last seen wearing a New York Yankees baseball hat and a button-down short sleeve shirt. He also had a light beard connected to a goatee, tinted eye glasses and a black wrist watch on his left wrist. The first incident occurred on July 17, 2012, when he allegedly entered into an Amalgamated Bank at 78-01 37th Avenue in Jackson Heights and took off with $1,450.suspect1 The latest robbery occurred Saturday, when the suspected entered Chase Bank at 69-55 Grand Avenue, passed a note and left with $5,170. Anyone with information regarding these incidents is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).
Oktoberfest fundraiser to be held at waterfront park Saturday
LIC-007Oct. 6, By Christian Murray Oktoberfest is coming to Hunters Point South Park this Saturday. The Hunters Point Parks Conservancy and LIC Landing are hosting an Oktoberfest event on October 11 (btw. 4pm and 7pm) next to LIC Landing. The party is a fundraiser for the Hunters Point Parks Conservancy, a non-profit group dedicated to maintaining the waterfront parks and hosting events. The funds raised will be used to host a series of events in the spring/summer of 2015—such as movies, a music series and family events. This Saturday’s fundraiser—aptly called ParkToberfest—will cost $50 a ticket, and attendees will be provided with unlimited beers between 4 pm and 7 pm from breweries such as Singlecut, Harpoon, Radeberger, Hofbrau and others. The cost of admission will also include a bratwurst sandwich, while other food—such as oysters-- is available for purchase. Music will be performed by the Street Beat Brass Band, a New York City brass band that plays an eclectic mix of music—from New Orleans Jazz, Mexican Banda, Gospel, Klezmer, and Funk. There will also be giveaways including T-shirts, hats and other beer-inspired gifts. “This will be our last fundraiser for the year before it gets too cold,” said Rob Basch, who is in charge of events for the Hunters Point Park Conservancy. Basch is hopeful that the weather will remain warm this Saturday. However, he said “Oktoberfest in Germany tends to be cold.” Basch is expecting about 200 people to turn out for the fundraiser. He said that the first 25 people to buy a ticket will receive a 1-litre Hofbrau Crystal mug, with the next 12 ticket buyers getting a 1-pint Hofbrau boot mug. Tickets can be purchased on the day or online at parkToberfest.eventbrite.com There will be an after party hosted by Alewife, where beer specials with be available to all ParkToberfest party goers. poster
Ramen restaurant to open on Vernon Blvd.
Japanese restaurant Oct. 5, By Christian Murray The owner of an Astoria ramen restaurant is opening a location on Vernon Boulevard. The restaurant, which is expected to be called Tamashii Blue, will be located 47-36 Vernon Boulevard. The ramen restaurant will be owned by Jhon Cho, who owns and operates Tamashii Ramen at 29-05 Broadway. The announcement comes weeks before Mu Ramen, a highly-touted ramen shop that had operated out of the Bricktown Bagels, opens at 12-09 Jackson Avenue. Cho said he plans to open his Vernon Boulevard restaurant in March. The restaurant will seat about 25 to 30 people—a little larger than the 22 seats that Mu Ramen will have. Cho said that he decided to open a Vernon Blvd location since there has been a lot of demand from Long Island City customers. He said many Long Island City residents call his Astoria restaurant hoping to place an order  that -due to distance--he is unable to meet.- Cho, a Korean national, has been in the US for 16 years and has worked or owned restaurants since. His father is Japanese while his mother is Korean. His mother operated a restaurant in Korea for more than 30 years, he said. For more information on Tamashi Ramen, click here.
Owner Jhon Cho

Owner Jhon Cho

Inside Tamashi Ramen

Inside Tamashi Ramen

Exterior of Tamashii Ramen

Exterior of Tamashii Ramen at 29-05 Broadway

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