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Rockrose files plans to develop ‘The Lot,’ community group wants it stopped

The lot

April 21, By Hannah Wulkan

A local development company filed plans to build a new 18-story residential and commercial tower in Long Island City yesterday, but a community group is looking to fight the project.

Rockrose Development, a company with several projects in Long Island City, filed plans yesterday to build an 18-story, 123-unit residential tower, with retail space on the first floor at 43-12 Hunter Street. The site is known by residents as ‘The Lot.’

According to the plans filed with the Department of Buildings, the project would have an outdoor terrace and amenity room for residents on the tenth floor, and another terrace and lounge on the 18th floor, as well as an exercise room. There would also be a lobby, laundry room, and mailroom on the bottom floors.

The new building would be 228 feet tall and would have 4,054 square feet of retail space. It would also have 86,562 square feet of residential space, meaning each apartment would average just over 700 square feet.

The Court Square Civic Association is attempting to fight back against the development, as the site has long been used as a public gathering space, despite the fact that it is privately owned.

The group has launched an online petition today calling for elected officials to work with Rockrose to save the property as open space and to generally create more open space and public parks in the area.

“We are calling upon our elected officials to help rectify a problem that is spiraling out of control. With all attention placed on the waterfront, communities east of 11th Street have gotten worse with almost no public open space and less and less light and fresh air as every square foot is going vertical,” the petition reads.

“In Court Square, it’s alarming to learn that one of the neighborhood’s most central, albeit private, open spaces, The Lot (located at 43-12 Hunter St), has been formally slated for development by its owner Rockrose Development,” it says.

Over the last several years, Rockrose has allowed The Lot, as the petition calls it, to be used for a variety of community purposes. It has been used by various to screen movies, host food events and markets, and as the home of a makeshift library book cart, among other things.

“We ask our electeds to work with Rockrose to actualize its potential in partnership with community groups for their tenants, our families, and neighbors,” the petition states about the property. “Given their vision to develop it, we cannot afford to wait and see. We’re simply asking for a collaborative effort to be made to earn more time for the neighborhood to understand and appreciate everything that it can be: a critical touchstone of our growing community.”

Rockrose has several other residential developments in the area, including The Hayden, a 51-story rental tower across the street from The Lot at 43-25 Hunter Street, and 42-story LINC LIC at 43-10 Crescent Street. The group also owns various retail sites throughout the area.

To view the petition, click here

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