Sept. 17, 2020 By Christian Murray
The School Construction Authority, which stopped work on building new schools when COVID-19 took hold in March, will be restarting work on P.S. 384Q in Long Island City, with a completion date of September 2021 still in tact.
The SCA had put the construction of new schools across the city on pause in March, citing the city’s budget constraints as well as COVID-19.
Construction work at some schools will now resume—including P.S. 384Q and an annex at P.S. 2 in Astoria–both slated to open in September 2021.
The middle school, however, on 48th Street in Sunnyside that is scheduled to be completed by September 2022 remains on hold.
“The P.S. 2 addition and the Parcel F school on 57 Ave [P.S. 384Q] are one of several projects that have been unpaused,” said Kevin Ortiz, a spokesperson with the School Construction Authority. “Work will resume in the coming days in order to meet our target opening of Sept 2021 for both.”
Ortiz said that the middle school in Sunnyside remains on pause.
The agency attributes the work stoppages to COVID-19 and the city’s fiscal crisis.
“We were requested by the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget to pause the majority of our work,” said Benjamin Goodman, a representative for the SCA, at Community Board 2’s monthly meeting on Sept. 3.
The completion date of many schools under construction remains uncertain.
The resumption of work at the new school building in Long Island City comes as a relief to many parents since the new building is expected to accommodate the current students at P.S.384Q, who are currently being taught at an incubator school that was established at 27-35 Jackson Ave in 2018.
A delay would cause significant overcrowding problems since the Jackson Avenue incubator site is not big enough to accommodate the influx of students expected to go to P.S. 384 in the 2021/2022 school year.
Lisa Deller, Community Board 2 Chair, warned Goodman at the CB2 meeting of a domino effect if the completion date is pushed back.
Meanwhile, the P.S. 2 annex, which is going up at the 75-10 21st Ave. school, is also back on track for opening in September 2021.
The $29 million annex will replace a temporary building that currently covers a portion of the school yard. The 3-story annex will include four new Pre-K classrooms, four Kindergarten classrooms and one regular classroom, as well as an art room, music room, exercise room and supervisory offices.
The annex is expected to cater to about 180 students.