You are reading

Developers Of Paragon Paint Building Apply For Zoning Variance, Plan 28-Story Building On Site Zoned For Manufacturing

paragon paint

Nov. 24, 2015 By Christian Murray

The owners of the Paragon Paint building are seeking a zoning variance so they can develop three residential buildings alongside the well-known factory that would in total create 334 apartments, about 14,000-square-feet of retail space and a public park.

The owners, Brent Carrier and Simon Baron Development, filed an application with the New York City Board of Standards and Appeals on Oct. 2, as they aim to get permission to build the dwelling units on property zoned for manufacturing. The application is currently being reviewed by Community Board 2.

The developers plan to keep the front section of the Paragon Paint building, located at 45-40 Vernon Blvd., and add three additional buildings of varying heights across three contiguous parcels they own.

One building would be 28 stories and would be attached to the existing Paragon Paint building, while the two others would be 13 stories and eight stories respectively. They are also requesting variances for height.

ParagonPaintrenderingThe 28-story building would be set back about 50 feet from the front of Vernon Boulevard. The 13-story building would be located next to it on Vernon Boulevard, with a public space separating the two buildings going down to a half-acre park by Anable Basin for public use.

The development would also bring an eight-story building to 46th Avenue.

The owners spoke before Community Board 2’s Land Use Committee last Wednesday and claimed that the development would be beneficial to the community since they would create a public park, cleanup a toxic site and bring 103 affordable apartments (30 percent of the units) to the neighborhood. The affordable apartments would be priced at 130 percent of Area Median Income.

In order to obtain the variance, the developers have to show that existing zoning regulations pose an unnecessary hardship to their project at this site.

The primary hardship the developers’ claim they face is the cost of environmental mediation, which is expected to cost about $20 million over and above what a normal cleanup would cost.

“I acquired this building in 2011 and at the time we knew it needed a significant cleanup… but it was much more extreme than anyone ever alluded too,” Carrier said at the meeting.

The Paragon Paint factory, which was constructed in 1935, was used to manufacture paint and varnish for decades.

The developers are in the midst of a remediation program where they are clearing the site of contaminated soil and treating the ground water. A significant portion of the building is now safe, with $16 million already having been spent.

The site, when it was taken over by Carrier, was deemed “a significant threat to human life” by the New York State Department of Health.

The remediation plan still involves the replacement of the timber bulkhead/seawall that touches Anable Basin. The bulkhead is viewed as porous and hazardous materials are leaking from the ground and ground water into the basin and the East River.

The remediation plan would require the replacement of the wooden bulkhead with a metal bulkhead.

“It’s a nice feeling to take an old blighted place and turn it into something the community can enjoy,” Carrier said.

The developers, however, are likely to recoup as much as $10 million of their remediation costs through New York State’s Brownfield Cleanup Program. The exact amount has yet to be determined.

The Community Board is scheduled to hear the plan at its next full board meeting on Dec. 3. The Board’s opinion is merely advisory.

Lisa Deller, chair of Community Board 2’s Land Use Committee, said the height of the development could pose a problem. “The height could get scaled back,” she said. “People are concerned about setting a precedent for that area.”

The developers are required by the BSA to hold a public hearing as part of the application process. The decision, however, is ultimately made by the BSA.

paragonPaintrendering1
ParagonPaintrendering2

Project renderings

For additional renderings, click here

email the author: [email protected]

31 Comments

Click for Comments 
Parent

PreK- 2nd grade school to be on first 2 floors to get these hight rights. Garage to be included. This kind of nfrastructure has to be demanded from every building if we do not want to explode.

Reply
HJ

Great another building so landlords could jack up the rentals even more in the surrounding neighborhood! I am tired of the rents going up wherever white people move to! I’m sorry, but that’s racial discrimination. White people have a right to live in housing that doesn’t cost more than 1/3 of their income, but in NYC, landlords don’t believe it. They believe white people should pay an arm and a leg to live somewhere. As soon as middle class white people get chased out of one area because the housing goes sky high and start moving into a lower rent area, the rents get raised. You know people roll their eyes when white people start moving in. “There goes the neighborhood! More whites are coming! Time to move out before the rents triple!”

Reply
not a condo dweller

Don’t speak for me. The “main retail street” is a mess as it is. This project is set back from the street. It does something to fix the ugliest building in Hunters Point.
Go back to fighting outdoor bar seating.

Reply
Ugh

All for development if the area even if residential on the major Avenue isn’t my first choice, but 28 stories is absurd. It is no one’s problem but the developers that they are over budget due to buying a toxic site. The community shouldn’t have to suffer with a hulking monstrosity on an otherwise lovely low rise Blvd because they can’t balance their checkbooks. 10 stories max lest we turn this area into skyhigh concrete jungle to rival fidi.

Reply
Anonymous visitor

Except for the developer and his friends posting positive comments above, people in LIC don’t want to see the main retail street crowded with enormous buildings. You can improve that site and build on it without burdening the area with Big Ugly.

Reply
Anonymous visitor

So unless you develop the site yourself, you can’t comment on it? Don’t be such a dipshit. The developer is seeking a variance to build on that site. It’s in everyone’s interest in the neighborhood to make sure they do it right.

Reply
Frank

Obviously anyone who disagrees with you must be a lackey for the developer. What a conceited idiot. I have no ties to the developer and happen to like the way the neighborhood is developing.

Reply
Anonymous visitor

At the end of the day….you cant stop development.
That stretch of Vernon is disgusting…nobody can walk around there and enjoy it….
the building will be kept – which adds a nice touch, and the waterfront access from Vernon is different than anything else in the area.
even if you dont like development, you have to at least appreciate some creativity. A building was going to be built there….there is not a bad option.

Reply
Anonymous visitor

Sorry, hulking 28-story buildings with their bullshit postage stamp-sized “parks” don’t belong on Vernon Boulevard. What’s wrong with you people? There’s no need to completely give away the neighborhood to developers.

Reply
Licfan

To those with negative comments like “postage stamp parks that don’t belong on Vernon Blvd” and “giving the neighborhood away”. May I ask, what would you like to see on Vernon Blvd? What kind of development is appropriate on Vernon Blvd?

Reply
ej

No residential for starters, no hulking 28 story buildings. Enough is enough! We need services and retail, there are enough people crammed in here as it is.

Reply
Licfan

Unfortunately, “enough people” is a relative term; I’m sure the existing businesses would not agree that there are enough people to support a thriving retail community. If we want retail and more services, we need more people.

Reply
Frank

Ej – Hunters Point is going to become a higher density neighborhood than it was. Get over it. Businesses need patrons to survive, and patrons don’t magically appear only when needed.

Reply
Ugh

Easy. Less rentals for the transient, more useful retail, and low rise on Vernon as was originally intended.

Reply
Licfan

I think this is a well conceived project that shows the strength and future of our neighborhood. We need vigorous retail to transform the neighborhood from a bedroom community. The cleanup of a toxic area and the addition of the park show the developers interest in trying to do it right. The setback of the tall building will also help maintain the character of Vernon Blvd. The Paragon building (14k square feet retail) will enhance our neighborhood and attract residents and tourists from Court Square to our businesses. Yes, we desperately need more schools and better transportation but hopefully those will come too – especially when we have even more voices in our neighborhood to make our needs felt.

Reply
Dana

Written by the owners/real estate exploitation squad. No amount of PR can hide the simple law breaking of the concept, no matter how many bribes–err, political contributions–are made. When the original Queens West development was made, a pledge to cede LOW RISE beyond the immediate waterfront was made.
Because:
1. Air and light, the little things of life, for the rest of Queens county;
2. overcrowding–as made abundantly clear in many posts–subways and schools can take only so much.
3. quality of life. As you elbow your way past thousands more of population than Manhattan was built for, rudeness, and real estate viciousness take over. Manhattan is uninhabitable. Sorry. Let Queens alone. You can ruin Brooklyn some more.

Reply
Anonymous visitor

I realize this is a site with anonymous commenters (like me), but if you are the developer, broker or someone else who stands to directly benefit from the project, please have the balls to state who you are and then offer your defense of the project. This BS comment and manipulation of the thumbs-up voting stink of deception. People in LIC aren’t idiots. We know what the benefits of development are as well as the reasons for being cautious about the intentions of developers.

Reply
Frank

This would be a nice addition to the neighborhood. That stretch of Vernon is pretty much a shithole other than the LIC Bar.

Reply
Anonymous visitor

I think it’s a great idea. Certainly better than an abandoned warehouse and low rise industrial type buildings. Waterfront access directly off Vernon will spur business growth in that area, which doesn’t get enough foot traffic.

Reply
Visitor

Is that a parking garage facing Vernon Boulevard? I would think you would want some sort of retail space there.

Reply
ed

“the development would be beneficial to the community since they would create a public park”. A public park? Is that to park the trailers for our soon to be overcrowded school? Awesome!!

Reply
Queens Resident

Whatever happened to refurbishing or redeveloping or restoring buildings. Why must we build high so that no one sees the sun? I also don’t understand how anyone could be for more luxury condos or apartment buildings when there is no infrastructure to support so many people?! I grew up in Queens. It was always crowded, but now there is traffic at all times of the day everywhere on the streets and subways. There aren’t enough schools or firehouses or parks, etc… And the rent keeps going up. For those commenters that don’t seem to understand New Yorkers, we’ve always been a city that is vocal about everything. Developers suddenly have power because they bribe or finance political campaigns and because we allowed the rezoning of our industrial areas, which provide work for the middle class. This all needs to stop.

Reply

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Gunman who fired shots at the Ravenswood Houses in Long Island City remains at large: NYPD

Police from the 114th Precinct in Astoria and PSA 9 are continuing their search for a gunman who allegedly opened fire at the Ravenswood Houses in Long Island City last month.

The incident occurred during the early morning hours of Wednesday, Jan. 18, when officers responded to a 911 call and a ShotSpotter activation for multiple shots fired at 21-25 35 Ave. at the Ravenswood Houses NYCHA complex just after 2 a.m., according to authorities.

Popular places where you can watch the Super Bowl in Queens

Feb. 2, 2023 By Tammy Scileppi

Hey, football fans! Game time is fast approaching, and across the city and here in Queens, you can feel the excitement brewing as the two teams prepare to take the field on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 12. So, kick back and watch the big game, and don’t miss Rihanna’s exciting performance during halftime. 

Borough president hears from community members on budget needs throughout Queens

During a two-day public hearing on the mayor’s 2024 preliminary budget, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. listened to testimonies from 14 community board representatives, community stakeholders and members of the public on where the money should be spent in Queens. 

The public hearings were held both in-person and via Zoom on Monday, Jan. 30, and Tuesday, Jan. 31, at Queens Borough Hall. The testimonials will be used to develop the Queens Borough Board’s FY24 preliminary budget priorities in the coming weeks. 

‘He didn’t deserve to die’: Borough President Richards leads emotional candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards held a candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols outside Queens Borough Hall Monday, Jan. 30 after Nichols’ death at the hands of police officers in Memphis, Tenn., made national headlines for the brutality in which the officers beat him.

Almost immediately after news broke about Nichols’ death, the Memphis police officers who beat him to death were fired and charged with murder. The police department released the body cam footage of the fatal beating on Jan. 27, but many people, including some at the vigil, have refused to watch it due to its extremely graphic nature.

Long Island City teen sentenced in fatal shooting of ‘beloved’ school teacher at Queensbridge Houses in 2020: DA

A Long Island City man on Friday, Jan. 28, was sentenced to 19 years in prison for the 2020 fatal shooting of a public school social studies teacher who was out walking his dog when he was caught in the crossfire during a confrontation between gang rivals in broad daylight, just blocks from his home, according to Queens District Attorney’s office.

Ike Ford, 19, of 12th Street, in Long Island City, pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the first degree before Queens Supreme Court Justice Kenneth Holder. The teacher, George Rosa, 53, was shot in his abdomen by a stray bullet fired by Ford, who was just 17 years old at the time of the shooting but was sentenced as an adult given the severity of the crime, according to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz.